Kevin Sinfield smashes £1m mark after 101-mile MND run for friend Rob Burrow

Kevin Sinfield 's gruelling 101-mile running challenge has now raised more than £1m to fund research into the causes and potential cures for motor neurone disease.

The former Leeds Rhinos captain received a hero's welcome at Headingley Stadium this morning as he finished the whole distance within his 24-hour target.

He had set off from Leicester Tigers' Welford Road stadium on Monday morning, with the goal of completing seven kilometres every hour and reaching his final destination before 8am the following day.

As Sinfield arrived on the outskirts of Leeds, he completed the last mile of the 24-hour run alongside his very close friend Rob Burrow 's wife, Lindsey, and daughter, Macy – with a clearly exhausted Sinfield admitting he was driven on by the presence of his former teammate.

A crowd of well-wishers gathered in the stands at Headingley and gave him an emotional reception as he crossed the line – after which he made a beeline to give good friend Burrow a warm hug.

As he crossed the line he had already long-since smashed his initial £100,000 target, and was soon sitting on more than half-a-million pounds raised.

That total is now into seven figures, and is expected to continue rising.

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It is not Sinfield's first huge fundraiser for MND research – inspired by Burrow, who was diagnosed with the disease in 2019, as he completed seven marathons in seven days last year to raise £2.7m.

The cash from this year's mammoth effort will be split between the MND Association and the Leeds Hospitals Charity appeal, which aims to build a new care centre in the city which will be named in honour of Burrow.

Emotions were running high for the ex-Rhinos skipper and those around him as he crossed the finish line, with Burrow's father Geoff also at the finish line to welcome him.

"It's been a real team effort from all the crew and I wouldn't have got it done without them," Sinfield told the BBC.

"I'm broken – I don't know when I'll be able to run again! Rob knows how much we love and care about him."

He added: "It was really tough at times, especially the end, but it's down to my little mate here," he said.

During his effort he said he was "buoyed by the support" from well-wishers who cheered him on throughout the run, but Sinfield explained that it was his friend Burrow who was on his mind throughout and helped him to push through the pain.

"That's what teams do, we stick together," he said. "We still look after each other, that's the great thing about rugby.

"I've said it before, when someone is in a bit of bother, a bit of strife, the Batman sign goes up and the group will come, that's probably the strength of that group of players.

"That's rugby, isn't it? Perhaps not all teams have it but ours did."

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