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Freeman ready for fund-raising marathon


SOLO EFFORT Tooreen hurler Cathal Freeman is raising money for charity this Sunday. Pic: Sportsfile

Ger Flanagan

HAVE you heard the one about the hurler who is going to run a marathon around his back garden while soloing a sliotar — all in the name of charity?
Well, that’s the challenge that Tooreen and Mayo star Cathal Freeman has set himself with the hope of raising money for the Irish Cancer Society and the HSE.
Of course, movement restrictions in light of Covid-19 means that Freeman can’t travel any more than 2km from his apartment in the University of Limerick, where he is a medical student.
But the former Mayo footballer has figured out a ‘work-around’ and intends to use a 30 metre loop in his back garden to allow him to travel the whole 42km journey with ash and ball in hand.
“Someone asked me how many times I’m going to have to do the loop, and after getting the calculator out, I found out I’m going to have to do 1400 laps!” the 29 year-old laughed when he spoke to The Mayo News.
“Mind you, I have never done more than 10km in any one go, so I don’t know how I am going to get through this!
“I got the idea from a guy over in England, James Campbell is his name, and thought, ‘how bad could this be?’ and without really thinking about it I threw in the hurl and sliotar.
“But after I thought about that, I reckon it’s going to get very dizzy!”
Before he starts, Freeman set himself the target of achieving 2000 retweets on his Twitter post declaring his intentions to do the challenge.
As of now, he’s already met that target and plans on doing the event — which is being live streamed on the Mayo GAA Facebook page — on Sunday around 11am.
He’s also set up a GoFundMe account for any donations.
 “Unfortunately the Irish Cancer Society missed out on their Daffodil Day towards the end of March,” he said. “That is something that affects myself and pretty much everyone else, because the Irish Cancer Society does amazing work.
“The second part of the fundraising drive is to raise money for the HSE to provide PPE (personal protective equipment) for the huge amount of healthcare workers who are being affected by the coronavirus while doing amazing work.”
To support Cathal with this great initiative, head to


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