Before their big charity game, bask in the hairy glow of DURFC’s wonderful Movember tashes
May the best moustache win
Following the success of the Charity Match against Exeter, where over £5,000 was raised, the DURFC first XV are now preparing to host Cardiff University in the annual "Movember Match".
Movember is a cause close to many DURFC hearts. It's the leading Men's Health Charity – aiming of changing the face of men's health permanently.
The three major areas that Movember helps to combat are prostate cancer, testicular cancer, men's mental health, and suicide prevention.
Three out of four suicides are male, over 500,000 die every year from suicide and it is the second leading cause of death amongst men aged 15-49. One in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime.
This year, DURFC is once again joining the fight and has so far raised close to £800 as many of the lads attempt to prove that they really can grow facial hair.
Ahead of this crucial match in Durham's bid for BUCS Super Rugby glory, we take a look at how the season has gone so far.
The season opener, the annual Alumni match at Rosslyn Park in London, saw the fellas take on a much-fancied Bath side who boasted several England players in their ranks.
A tough contest ensued but a bit of quick thinking from centre Matt Welsh, along with a classy performance from Paddy McDuell saw the boys in Palatinate kick off the season with a win.
Durham 30, Bath 24.
Next up, old rivals Exeter made the journey up to Hollow Drift only to be met by a hard-hitting wall of Palatinate, led by the feared Durham back row.
Described by former England international/Durham Ranger Will Greenwood as "one of the best DURFC has ever seen," they have been a constant source of inspiration throughout season and this was no difference as flanker Fitz Harding scored a vital try to guide Durham to a second W in a row.
Durham 29, Exeter 28.
With a long bus journey in their legs the first XV then took on Cardiff University. The Welsh-rain and heavy legs took their toll in the first half as Cardiff looked strong in attack. Fortunately, a well-structured second half with tries from Colin Markham and Ben Stevenson brought Durham back into the game. A try in the dying minutes as vice-captain Ben Fowles crashed over secured a well fought victory.
Cardiff 24, Durham 26.
In recent years, Hartpury have been a dominant force in BUCS rugby. This year has been no different. Simple errors and clinical Hartpury attack meant spaces were readily available in a tired Durham defence. This being said, there were glimmers of Durham's class in areas of the game but the boys from Gloucester were just too strong on the day.
Durham 17, Hartpury 57.
The Loughborough fixture is always a war of attrition and this years match looked set to be one of the closest in recent memory. Loughborough's strong forwards and edge to edge play controlled the first quarter but Palatinate dominance in the set piece and clinically executed tries meant Durham always looked in control. A rare win against the old foes tasted sweet for the boys in front of their raucous home crowd.
Durham 32, Loughborough 19.
After bouncing back with a win against Loughborough, another long journey to the Welsh capital, this time to face Cardiff Met, proved the next challenge for Durham.
Once again the rain and wind took their hold of the game making the line-out a lottery and forcing the "jouers" to keep the ball tight. Despite being level at halftime, a strong showing from Cardiff Met early in the second half left the Palatinates chasing the game. Durham were unable to overturn the deficit and travelled home with a sour taste as this was one that got away.
Cardiff Met, 15 Durham 6.
Seeking to avoid two losses on the trot as well as avenge the home defeat, the 1st XV then travelled to Hartpury, fully aware of the difficulty of challenge they would be facing.
Unfortunately, similarly to the match at Hollow Drift, Hartpury's class shone through as they consolidated their position at the top of the table.
Hartpury 41, Durham 10.
Highly aware that another loss would threaten to derail their season, the Palatinates then travelled down to Bath seeking to replicate their performance from earlier in the season. Two tries from second-row Henry Paremain and a scintillating performances from Charlie Wilson and substitute Charlie Spawforth led to a resounding victory to take back to Durham ahead of the much-anticipated "Movember Match".
Bath 13, Durham 27.
Get yourselves down to Hollow Drift for a 6:30pm kick off to support your first XV and help to create an electric atmosphere as the boys battle to get the win.
As ever there will be hot drinks and food sold at the bar, a tinny bar will be selling £1.50 cans and the lovely Durham Divas will be providing some halftime entertainment!