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Page last updated at 14:57 GMT, Monday, 20 June 2011 15:57 UK

Warrington legend Paul Darbyshire passes away

Paul Darbyshire
Darbyshire kicked a goal in the 1990 Challenge Cup final against Wigan

Warrington legend Paul Darbyshire has passed away aged 41 after a battle with motor-neurone disease.

He spent 18 years with the Wire, making his debut as a player in March 1989 and went onto make 106 appearances, scoring 60 points in all competitions.

Darbyshire remained at Warrington after his retirement and was assistant to four head coaches during his time.

He joined Irish rugby union side Munster in June 2007 as head of strength and conditioning.

"He was a tough character who was very much larger than life and always gave more than he got," said former Warrington head coach Paul Cullen, under whom Darbyshire worked as an assistant.

"He played well above his height and weight and physical prowess really, but he made a mark on a rugby league field."

Darbyshire also made his mark when he loved to union with Munster.

"They have a different set of standards to anything I've seen before," Cullen told BBC Radio Manchester. "And Paul Darbyshire found himself in very good company.

"He was very good for Munster rugby, and they were very good to him and his family.

"The fact that they have taken an Englishman to their hearts speaks volumes, as they realise the qualities of individual more than anything else."

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