Bradford’s Bear Grylls aims to be positive role model for Muslim community
Channel 4’s latest series of Bear Gryll’s hit show, The Island, kicked off this week with Bradford’s own Rizwan Shabir leaving quite an impression on viewers and his fellow campmates.
The 26-year-old mobile phone shop owner is a self-confessed ‘huge fan of survival shows’ yet initially struggled to settle in camp when he arrived on the isolated archipelago.
Suffering what seemed to be a panic attack, the Yorkshireman said he had never felt his heart beat so fast as the team of eight men were forced to set up camp on what would turn out to be a uninhabitable tidal beach.
Eventually seeking shelter from the sea in the wild terrain, Rizwan was finally able to settle for a good night’s sleep – or as good as it can be on the jungle floor where spiders fall from the branches above and angry scorpions scuttle freely.
Unfortunately for his fellow contestants, Rizwan’s thunderous snoring prevented many others from achieving such a peaceful rest.
The show continues every Monday for 13 episodes. Whether Rizwan will survive until the end is yet to be seen, but his character is certainly getting plenty of attention on social media.
@Harry_wsykes was one of Rizwan’s fans writing: “Would love to go on The Island! Rizwan is hilarious! If he can survive this anyone can!”
However, others were less keen on the local husband and father.
“20 mins on the island #Rizwan [says] "you think you can do it? I dare you to sign up" Seriously. I've had worse experiences getting out the bath,” wrote @xCarlyMcx, whilst @DonEyles added: “Think Rizwan thought he had signed up to go to Ireland, not 'the island'. Rookie error. Drink those tears mate.”
As a practicing Muslim, Rizwan will face challenges others may not have to on the Island, as he only eats Halal meat and prays five times a day.
He says hopes he can be a positive role model for the Muslim community through the show and we the best of luck to our very own Rizwan Crusoe.