Rugby's Call to Arms
FANS might not recognise the Lismore City Greens this weekend, but they certainly won’t miss them.
The Greens are set to turn Rugby Park canary yellow for their FNC Rugby Union round 11 fixture with Ballina tomorrow – all in the name of charity.
The Cancer Council’s Call to Arms campaign is aimed at raising awareness among men about cancer.
The campaign has seen sporting clubs all over the nation don a sprinkling of yellow over the past week – but the Greens have gone the whole hog.
The Lismore club has had a striking canary yellow strip made up which will be worn during the first grade clash with Ballina and then auctioned off after the game.
Club secretary Ian Barrett, who was approached by former player Matt Tickle to get involved, says that there has been a groundswell of support for the concept from within the club.
“The Cancer Council sent us out a kit which contained yellow electrical tape for the players to wear as armbands,” Barrett said.
“We got together with the players and decided that if we were going to do it we should do it properly.
“The players really wanted to be a part of it and they felt that wearing the armbands would hardly make a point.”
And so the club commissioned sportswear manufacturer KooGa to produce 22 of the one-off jerseys at a cost of around $65 a pop.
A fair outlay for the club but Barrett is confident it will be money well spent.
“We have one of the jerseys hanging in the club and the interest we have had in them has been enormous,” he said.
“These jerseys will only be seen once; I reckon if you get one for $100 you will be lucky.”
Competition in the sale ring is set to be fierce with a whole range of potential buyers believed to be interested in the jerseys.
Sponsors want them; local publicans will be keen for a rare addition to their sports bar; the club has a mountain of juniors and Golden Oldies who will be interested in this keepsake; and some of the players who will wear the jerseys are even keen to buy them back.
The auction will take place immediately after the first grade match with all proceeds to the charity.
The club will also be selling yellow wristbands and is encouraging fans to turn up in yellow to support the team and the cause.
But amongst all the fun remains the main message.
Sandra Rowan, of the Cancer Council, stresses that just as women need to be screened for breast cancer, men need to stay up to date by having checks with their doctor.
“Compared to women, Australian men are more likely to be diagnosed with cancer, and men are also less likely to survive their diagnosis,” Rowan said.
Call to Arms will rally at Lismore Rugby Park tomorrow with all four grades set to turn out beginning with thirds at 11:20am.