15 MARCH 2008

Helping kick off a weekend of fundraising sport, ex-Newcastle United footballer Alan Shearer and TV presenter Adrian Chiles have cycled from Newcastle to London in just two days. The super-fit men's pedal power helped raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for this year's Sport Relief.

The BBC's biannual dose of healthy entertainment began on Friday, when presenter Patrick Kielty hosted a special TV extravaganza which saw a host of celebs taking part in themed versions of popular shows such as Strictly Come Dancing and The Apprentice.

One of the evening's highlights was the traditional boxing match, and GMTV host Ben Shepherd was certainly pulling no punches. He was judged the winner after sparring for three one-minute rounds against soul singer Lemar.

The fundraising received an extra-special boost when a mystery donor gave £5.5 million to the cause, which helps vulnerable and needy people around the world. Organisers are checking to see if the amount – given, said Patrick, by a "good friend of Sport Relief" – is the largest single donation to a live telethon.

So far, Sport Relief has brought in £19 million. Events are continuing throughout the weekend, culminating in Sunday's fun run when tens of thousands of people are due to jog a mile to raise even more funds for the worthwhile cause.

Photo: ©
Football star Alan Shearer and TV presenter Adrian Chiles succesfully completed the 335 mile cycle from Newcastle to London in two days, helping raise the total for the worthwhile cause Photo: © BBC Pictures Click on photos for gallery
Photo: ©
The hotly anticipated boxing match saw GMTV presenter Ben Shepherd, who was mentored by Ricky Hatton, defeating soul singer Lemar Photo: © BBC Pictures
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