​Former Edinburgh men get on their bikes for Doddie

​Former Edinburgh men get on their bikes for Doddie

Former Edinburgh Rugby Coach, captain and club centurion Duncan Hodge is undertaking a mammoth task in support of My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, cycling 515 miles from Edinburgh to Cardiff to deliver the match ball for the Doddie Weir Cup, as Scotland take on Wales at Principality Stadium.

Hodge will be undergoing the effort next month alongside former Edinburgh stars Carl Hogg and Craig Joiner, as well as current Dragons Head Coach Dean Ryan, all close friends and former teammates of Doddie Weir.

The ‘Melrose Falcons’ will be joined by 100s of other riders, cycling in a relay to deliver the match ball for Scotland’s Six Nations clash with Wales at the Principality Stadium. Hodge spoke with Sunday Times' Mark Palmer earlier this week to discuss the challenge.

“When Hoggy asked me before Christmas if I fancied doing it, after the immediate shock of thinking I couldn’t manage it, my main thought was of how you don’t often get a great chance to make a difference, especially for someone as special as Doddie,” said Hodge when interviewed by Sunday Times' Mark Palmer earlier this week.

“It will be daunting in some ways, but it’s an amazing cause and we’re all just delighted to do something. You see how much work has gone in from him, everyone else involved in the foundation and the family, and it’s genuinely a real inspiration. All you can say is, ‘I’m in, let’s see how much awareness and money we can raise, let’s crack on!’

“Dean is a keen cyclist. Craig is fairly keen, and we’ve got a bike in the house here. It’s not been the easiest with the weather recently, so I’ve just been jumping on that. Everyone is trying to get out and about a bit more now for the last few weeks.

“We’re all fairly fit and active so we should be OK, but we know there will be some horrible moments in there. We’re praying the weather is all right, because if you’re going through the night, it’s wet, windy, minus degrees and you’re going up a hill, that’s going to be testing. But that’s why we’re doing it.

“Potentially the biggest issue is sleep. There’s a lot of cycling through the dark and when you’re not biking, you’re in a Transit van listening to Hoggy relaying stories about how good Melrose were back in the day, trying to rest and recover somehow.

“Doddie will be in our thoughts the whole time. He was just the best team-mate you could ask for. A quality player, and a fantastic person to be in the teamroom, round the hotel and on the pitch with. Every minute you spend with him is just great fun.”

Supporters can get behind Hodge, Joiner, Hogg and the ‘Melrose Falcons’ by donating to the Doddie Cup 500 JustGiving page below.


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