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Wednesday 17 September 2014

Red Army tackle mega road trip to Marseille

Brian Byrne

Published 25/04/2014 | 02:30

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James Hayes, Philip Deeney, Don Grimes, Eddie Ryan, Brendan Condon and Paul Murray will make a 50-hour trek to France for Munster’s semi-final clash against Toulon in Marseille. Liam Burke/Press 22

Munster rugby's former physiotherapist has joined a group of motorcyclists on a scenic trek to France ahead of the team's Heineken Cup semi-final clash with Toulon this weekend.

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Paul Murray (51) kicked-off the 50-hour trek at Thomond Park, Co Limerick, yesterday with seven friends, including three gardai and a solicitor.

The Donegal native, who worked with the team during the 2001, 2002 and 2003 seasons, said he "jumped at the chance" when the group invited him on the trip.

"I worked with the team in the early days and I remember the lads used to come down on bikes to the matches. I met up with them every year when I was in France, but I never got an opportunity to go myself now until this year," he said.

The group drove from Thomond Park to Rosslare, Co Wexford, yesterday afternoon before boarding a ferry at 9.30pm last night to Cherbourg in north-western France.

They are due to arrive in the port city this afternoon before embarking on a five-hour drive to Bourges.

The bikers intend to continue the journey to Marseille tomorrow, but will make a pit stop in Clermont for the first semi-final between Clermont and Saracens. They'll then carry on through Leon before arriving in Marseille in southern France tomorrow evening.

The semi-final clash between Munster and Toulon takes place at the Stade Velodrome at 3.30pm on Sunday.

Irish Independent

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