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Corry leads stars to aid Matt Hampson Trust

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Former Leicester Tigers captain Martin Corry will lead a star-studded England team against Ireland Legends in a charity match in the New Year which will benefit the Matt Hampson Trust.

The Stuart Mangan Cup match at Twickenham Stoop on Friday, February 26 (7.45pm), is in aid of the Matt Hampson Trust and the Paralysed Rugby Players’ Fund in Ireland.

Corry will be joined by Tigers head coach Richard Cockerill and former team-mates Neil Back, Darren Garforth, Tim Stimpson, Dorian West, Leon Lloyd and Austin Healey in the England side.

The squad also includes Jason Leonard, England’s most-capped player, who will be making his return to The Stoop, and fellow World Cup winners Josh Lewsey, Mike Catt and Mark Regan.

Ireland’s squad will be led by Shane Byrne and will include Mick Galwey, Peter Clohessy, Reggie Corrigan, Victor Costello, Trevor Brennan, Derek McAleese, Maurice Field, John O’Neill, Justin Bishop and Rob Henderson.

Corry said: “Ireland have picked an all-international side and when we saw that we realised we had to get the big guns out as well.”

The teams will play for the Stuart Mangan Memorial Cup, in honour of the 26-year-old who died in August after suffering the worst possible spinal injury while playing for Hammersmith and Fulham RFC in London last year. After spending seven months in hospital, he returned to his flat in Bayswater and, like Matt Hampson, never allowed his injury to affect his love for rugby and life.

Stuart and Matt became close friends and had often discussed organising a joint event in aid of their respective trusts and the idea for the Legends game was conceived.

The game will be refereed by former international referee Tony Spreadbury, who was overseeing the training session in which Matt suffered his injury.

Organisers are aiming to make this match an annual event and plans are already under way for the return to be played in Dublin in 2011.

Tickets for The Stoop contest cost £10, concessions £5 and are available online at www.englandirelandlegends.co.uk

Read a full interview with Martin Corry about the Legends game in the next edition of the Tigers matchday programme, which will be available at Welford Road at the Sale Sharks fixture on Sunday, December 27.

To find out more, visit www.englandirelandlegends.co.uk or see the Matt Hampson website.