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Disgraced Irish rugby star Brennan reveals a burning ambition to play again

Trevor Brennan, who was banned from rugby for five years after punching a fan, has said he hopes to return to the game when his five-year ban comes to an end.

The disgraced ex-Leinster and Ireland player has opened up to RTE in a candid documentary about his new life in Toulouse and the ups and downs of his career.

Mr Brennan, from Kildare, captained AIB League side St Mary's, played for Leinster and has 13 Irish caps to his name.

His career came to a sudden halt when he dramatically punched Ulster fan Patrick Bamford at a match in France three years ago — an incident that initially got him banned from the game for life.

He later appealed and the ban was reduced to five years, although he still had to cough up over €30,000 in fines.

The ban comes to an end in June 2012.

The ex-Toulouse lock said he regretted climbing into the stands and assaulting Mr Bamford.

Mr Brennan (40) said that a group of Ulster fans had been |riling him as he warmed up on |the sidelines at a Heineken Cup match in Toulouse's Stade Ernest Wallon.

“I climbed the wall and did what I did,” he said. “I regret this incident. That is the last thing I wished to do.”

One witness said that Mr Brennan lunged towards Mr Bamford and began striking him as hard as he could in the face with his |fists.

The assault left Ulster supporters shocked and surprised.

Mr Brennan was charged with misconduct and an independent disciplinary committee ruled that the player should be banned from participation in any capacity in tournaments organised by the European Rugby Cup.

In This Sporting Life, he revealed his desire to get back on the pitch.

“Despite having ended his career with a ban, he has aspirations to play again some day, in some form,” a RTE source said.

“We also see how much he has been embraced by the people of Toulouse, who will never forget the great joy he gave them on the pitch as a player.”

Mr Brennan now lives in Toulouse with his wife Paula and three sons where he runs De Danu Irish bar, as well as Trevor Brennan Rugby Tours.

The RTE television series follows six of Ireland's most eminent sportsmen and women, including golfer Christy O'Connor Jr, athlete Catherina McKiernan, footballer Tony Cascarino, jockey Paul Carberry and Gaelic footballer Dessie Farrell.

The programme airs on July 22 at 7pm on RTE 1.

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