FRANNY Benali is Wales-bound as he continues his extraordinary feat of endurance.

The 45 year-old is into the second half of his 1,000-mile run from St James’ Park to St Mary’s via the other 18 Premier League clubs.

After reaching Aston Villa at noon on the 11th day of his 21-day challenge, he made the short journey to West Brom.

Boosted by a delivery of bespoke ‘Benali’s Big Run’ cupcakes at the Hawthorns, Benali had a spring in his step as he set off for Swansea City.

He is expected to arrive at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday morning, from where he will begin the long trip to London, arriving at QPR on Wednesday.

Benali has undertaken the challenge in aid of Cancer Research UK and has now raised more than £40,000.

He hopes to raise £1m and his sponsorship should multiply as he gets closer to St Mary’s, where he is due to arrive on Saturday, September 13 – when Saints host Newcastle United.

“My right knee’s been a problem for a few days on top of stiffness in the legs and there’ll be more difficult periods to get through, but the warm welcome I’m getting at grounds helps,” he said.

“I just hope the body stands up to it.”

You can follow Franny’s progress on Twitter @Benalisbigrun and at

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