Ireland news July 2, 2012

Charity bike ride for Ireland pair

ESPNcricinfo staff

William Porterfield never learned to write a bike as a child - he was too busy playing cricket - but he is saddling up alongside his Ireland team mate Gary Wilson for a charity cycle ride the length of Ireland.

Wilson, none too experienced on two wheels himself, although slightly less wobbly, devised the ride in memory of his mother, Iris, who died earlier this year. All funds raised will go to Cancer Research UK.

Wilson and Porterfield plan to cycle 380 miles in five days, beginning at Mardyke CC in Cork and heading north through Kilkenny, Malahide, Armagh and Derry before finishing, assuming all goes well, in Wilson's home city of Belfast. There will be a charity dinner at Stormont on the final evening..

Both have until October to perfect their cycling skills as well as praying that the incessant wind and rain which has brought one of Ireland's wettest springs on record will by then be a distant memory.

"I was just one of those things that I never really rode a bicycle when I was young", Porterfield said. "I guess it's not the most difficult thing to do but I will be putting in a few miles between now and the off."

Wilson said: "It will be tough going. Cricket has, of course, kept us pretty fit but I think we'll have to put in a lot more training before we set off."

Relatives and friends have been invited to accompany them on route and members of the public are also welcome to tag along..

"It will be a long haul and I think we will be tested to the limit. But we have organised it that way in the hope that people will support us given the toughness of the task."


October 9: Mardyke CC to Kilkenny. October 10: Kilkenny to Malahide CC. October 11: Malahide CC to Armagh. October 12: Armagh to Bready CC. October 13: Bready CC to Stormont.

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