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Cyclist duo enter the last leg of their 30,000km tour

THE IRISH cyclists who circumnavigated the globe are on the final leg of their epic journey.

Simon Evans and Fearghal O'Nuallain, both 28, are currently in England and are due to arrive in Ireland next week.

The Greystones pair travelled more than 30,000km since their departure from home soil in November 2008.

The duo's homecoming will be marked with a cycle from Blackrock College to Greystones Rugby Club next Saturday. And Fearghal said that they are now enjoying the last few kilometres of their worldwide adventure.

"We're hanging in there. And hanging on to the last morsels of this little adventure," he said.

"Si's shoes are held together with tape, my pump has developed an asthmatic wheeze, our socks are holed, and the backside of one of my cycling shorts is so threadbare and transparent that you could be forgiven for thinking that it came from a Victoria's Secret catalogue."

The childhood friends have traversed Africa, South America, Asia and Europe, passing through 30 countries on the route and are now halfway across England on the home stretch.

Fearghal, originally trained as a chef, worked in L'Ecrivain and Shanahans on the Green in Dublin, while Simon was working as a structural engineer in Cambridge before setting of on the mad cap world tour.

It has been estimated that the cost of the journey amounts to €70,000.

Before they left, the seasoned cyclists undertook a series of training expeditions to build up their fitness and endurance levels.

"Over the past 18 months, we've passed through many countries and landscapes, slogged up mountain passes and rolled effortlessly along flat open plains," said Fearghal.

"We've had aches and strains, been hungry, thirsty, sick and tired. But without the support of the people on our route, we would not be where we are now, with only a short stint left to do until we finish in Greystones."

Next Saturday, the pair will complete their journey in Ireland. They are encouraging all cyclists to join in on the final lap from Blackrock College at 2pm to cycle to Greystones Rugby Club for the homecoming party.

Anyone who wishes to participate is asked to make a minimum €20 donation to depression charity, Aware.