THE Australian championship of gay rugby is on this weekend at Brisbane’s Ballymore Stadium – Queensland’s spiritual home of rugby.

The Purchas Cup is the Australian gay rugby championship that is played each year and named after the founding captain of the Sydney Convicts –Australia’s first gay rugby team  Andrew Purchas.

This year, the event will be hosted by the Brisbane Hustlers (pictured) on Saturday, with participation from the Melbourne Chargers and the Sydney Convicts.

Hustlers co-vice president Martin Tebbutt said Queensland Rugby Union had shown their support for inclusive rugby, which is why the event will be held at Ballymore.

“Ballymore is the spiritual home of Queensland rugby, the scene of many great tests and interstate matches over the years,” he said.

“Every player will feel privileged to have run on to the same ground as Queensland greats like John Eales, Tim Horan and Michael Lynah.

“Ballymore holds a special place in the hearts of every Australian rugby fan.”

Tebbutt said teams from NZ will also be competing against the three Australian teams, in what is seen as a preparation of the Bingham Cup – the World Cup of gay rugby – to be held in Sydney in August.

“The Purchas Cup is the last chance for our teams to leave an impression on the competition before the Bingham, and with Sydney the reigning champs, everyone will be looking to knock them off,” he joked.

“The Convicts have never lost the trophy, but as the Brisbane and Melbourne teams grow, we are getting closer to wrestling the trophy off them.

“The Hustlers in particular will be looking to make use of the home ground advantage, after only just losing in a tight game last year.”

The Purchas Cup is on Saturday, March 15 from 10am at Ballymore Stadium



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