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Rugby Legends Raise Funds For Cancer Research

Rugby Legends Raise Funds For Cancer Research

The Rugby Legends Cycle, which finishes at Malin Head on Friday afternoon, is in aid of cancer charity CROSS and is aimed at supporting cancer research and improved patient care at the Institute of Molecular Medicine, Trinity College and St. James’s Hospital

Former Ireland and Lions prop Paul Wallace became patron of the CROSS charity two years ago and together with his brothers, David and Richard, came up with the idea of the charity cycle to raise funds in a positive and fun way.

If you walked through Shop Street in Galway on Tuesday afternoon there were people collecting money for the cycle from Mizen Head to Malin Head.

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The legends rolled into a sun-kissed Sportsground around 6pm on Tuesday having left Thomond Park in Limerick that morning.

Paul recruited the support of his brothers David and Richard and cajoled a bunch of other rugby legends into giving a helping hand by joining the cycle. Denis McBride, Mick Galwey and Conor McGuinness were among the former Ireland international contingent in Galway.

They have also been joined along the way by the likes of Ieuan Evans, Colin Charvis, Shane Byrne, Paddy Johns and Scott Hastings.

Averaging about 100 kilometres every day and with the support of a larger group of cyclists, the legends will complete the west coast pilgrimage in seven days.

The Institute of Molecular Medicine in Trinity College is run by Professor John Reynolds and the charity helps to support the education and training of high quality medical and scientific students in their careers as young cancer researchers.

CROSS also helps with the purchase of laboratory equipment which supports various research projects aimed at the prevention, understanding and treatment of various forms of cancer.

To coincide with the arrival of the rugby legends at the Sportsground, Connacht Rugby organised a family friendly event where the entire Connacht squad were on hand to sign autographs and mix with the many supporters, both young and old, who turned up on a beautiful sunny evening.

There was ice cream, bouncy castles, face painting, mini rugby games and obstacle courses for the children and everybody mingled around the barbecue over a coffee or a beer, listening to some lovely traditional music in the late evening sun.

The event was rounded off by an interprovincial passing competition – Mick Galwey, Denis McBride and Paul Wallace competed manfully for Munster, Ulster and Leinster respectively, but none could compete with the Connacht man Conor McGuinness who demolished the opposition with a fine display of scrum half passing.

Conor is a member of the Connacht Rugby Professional Game Board and helped to organise the Connacht leg of the rugby legends cycle.

The rugby legends departed for Ballina on Wednesday, heading through Balinrobe, Castlebar and Foxford along the way. They were be hosted by Ballina Rugby Club last night.

It is still not too late to sign up and join them on the remaining sections of the challenge and you can also donate to the charity here or contribute to the collectors along the route. Good luck to everyone cycling the final kilometres.

Audio Interview: Paul Wallace

Audio Interview: David Wallace

Audio Interview: Conor McGuinness

You can also donate via David Wallace’s mycharity.ie page, Paul Wallace’s mycharity.ie page and Richard Wallace’s mycharity.ie page.