Belfast Telegraph

Wayne McCullough to hand over 2012 torch at border

By Cliona Foley

Boxer Wayne McCullough is expected to hand the Olympic torch over at the border when the flame for the 2012 Games heads to the Republic.

The Belfast fighter will present it to 1992 welterweight gold medal winner Michael Carruth in the early-morning handover outside Newry on June 6.

The Olympic flame will then travel to the Republic’s International Olympic Committee headquarters in Howth before heading to Croke Park and then to the Garden of Remembrance at Parnell Square.

In a huge publicity coup for the GAA, it has secured a provisional agreement to abseil the Olympic Torch off the roof of Croke Park next summer.

The torch will arrive in Northern Ireland on June 3, but will make a 24-hour detour into the Republic, where it will be carried in a relay format from Newry to Dublin and back by a selection of Irish sport stars and celebrities.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) still have to formally agree to the Irish leg of the torch run, but it has already been agreed in principle and just needs to be rubber-stamped.

The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) have confirmed that some of Ireland's non-Olympic sports stars will also be invited to take part. Brian O'Driscoll and Dublin football captain Bryan Cullen are among those likely to be selected for the spectacular Croke Park leg.

The abseil has been provisionally planned for 10am on Wednesday, June 6.

OCI President Pat Hickey revealed yesterday that the GAA's successful Royal visit was a big factor in attracting them to use the venue.

Belfast Telegraph

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