KZN firefighter and chopper pilot ready to ‘survive’

2014-01-16 00:00

FIREFIGHTER and paramedic Philip Dickson, and helicopter pilot Altaaf Sheik hope their high-pressure jobs will help them to handle whatever challenges they face in Survivor South Africa: Champions.

Dickson (32), who lives in Greenwood Park, Durban, told The Witness: “I understand fire and safety, so I guess I could help make a fire.

“My job calls for maximum performance until the work is done, so the fitness and endurance that comes with my line of work could be key.”

Phoenix-born Sheik (29) agrees: “I definitely think my training and profession will stand me in good stead.

“I’ve told myself that I need to be indispensable to my tribe at challenges and if I make it to individual immunity challenges then my goal is to win at least two of them.”

Asked what made them enter the reality show, Dickson, said he had always wanted to be a part of Survivor.

“I want to see how I will fare in the bush with no food, no comforts and a bunch of people who stand between me and R1 million!” he added.

Sheik said he entered the show to enjoy a “holiday” with former Springbok rugby player Corné Krige and Bafana Bafana legend Mark Fish.

“I was grounded after a motorbike accident and in a bad place from a morale point of view, so a very good friend suggested that maybe I should take a break and go away on holiday. When I saw the ads on TV I figured why not!”

In Survivor South Africa: Champions, Fish and Krige will lead two tribes through the trials and tribulations of a life without luxuries on a deserted island in the South China Sea. While the captains can’t be voted off, they will undoubtedly try to outperform each other.

The 20 castaways, on the other hand, will have to do whatever it takes to not be voted off at tribal council. If they manage to survive 27 days of hell in paradise, they will walk off with R1 million and the title of Ultimate Survivor.

Sheik believes the toughest aspect of Survivor will be playing the social game.

“Pain, isolation and hunger are all mindset but the social aspect is unpredictable because people are after all unpredictable, especially in a game like Survivor,” he said.

For Dickson, meanwhile, the biggest challenge is the risk of going hungry. “I love food, so I hope the lack of food during this experience doesn’t bite me in the bum. Other than that, I think I can handle any other obstacles and challenges,” he added.

The show will broadcast on Sundays on M-Net, starting on January 19.

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