England rugby hero Mike Tindall details father’s heartbreaking Parkinson’s disease battle

World Cup winning rugby star Mike Tindall has spoken of his heartache about his dad’s health deteriorate due to Parkinson’s disease.

Phil Tindall, 73, has had the neurological disorder for 17 years.

Mike, 41, is now taking on gruelling events to raise money in an effort to help find a way to beat the condition.

He said: “My relationship with my dad is great, but it saddens me to see the man who taught me how to play rugby and taught me how to be a good sportsman – and generally a good bloke – has declined in his health through the crawling pace of this disease.

“If we can raise money and put it towards a cure, I will go through the pain for him, and enjoy it in some weird way.”

Phil, who worked as a banker for Barclays, captained Otley rugby union club in West Yorkshire.



Mike Tindall with his father, Phil

And it was a proud moment when his son was in the team as England won the World Cup in Australia in 2003.

Mike, married to the Queen’s granddaughter Zara Phillips, completed a 430-mile cycle ride in the Pyrenees last year for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, and was in agony as he struggled up the highest mountain pass, the Col du Tourmalet.

He told the RunPod podcast: “We had an idea to ride across the Pyrenees from the most western coast to the eastern side of France.

“So, 700-odd kilometres over 14 or 15 thousand metres of climbing… And I remember when I was going up the Tourmalet, I started cursing my dad having Parkinson’s, because I was in quite a lot of pain going up completely on my own.”



Tindall continues to raise money to fight Parkinson’s disease

The former England captain, who played for Bath and Gloucester, is now planning a charity run.

He said: “Running is now going to be another reason for cursing my dad, but… it’s all for an amazing cause.”

The outside centre played for England between 2000 and 2011, winning 75 caps.



Mike Tindall with his parents Phil and Linda in 2009



Zara Tindall and Mike Tindall

He married Zara, the daughter of Princess Anne, in 2011. The couple have two daughters, Mia, six, and Lena, two.

Zara, 39, an equestrian who won silver at the 2012 London Olympics, bagged gold at the eventing world championships on her horse Toytown in 2006, and was voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year months later.

Phil still lives in Yorkshire with former social worker wife Linda.

source.



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