The Sydney Convicts are gearing up for what is expected to be their biggest year in international competition – defending their Bingham Cup and Plate world titles.

The defending champions have set their sights on matching the San Francisco Fog’s record of two consecutive world titles when they travel to Dublin later this year.

“We started training just before Christmas and we’ll be going hard at it in the coming weeks and months,” Convict Iain Jepsen told SSO.

“We are a rugby team that happens to be gay, not gay guys playing rugby,” Jepsen said.

“We certainly give the straight boys a run for their money.”

The Convicts have two separate teams to cater to all different skill levels, and are always looking for more players keen to throw on a pair of boots and scrum down with the other players.

“We are looking to possibly take three teams to Dublin – one to compete for the Bingham Cup and the other two for the Bingham Plate and Bowl. It depends on numbers, money and funding,” Jepsen said.

Visit the Convicts stand at Fair Day on 17 February. As well as the raffles and a pass-the-footy competition, it’s the annual Fair Day tug-of-war, in which the convicts remain undefeated.

Later in the year the infamous Rugger Bugger strip night will take place as well as a trivia night and footy comps to help raise money for the Convicts’ title defence.

The Bingham Cup is a progressive step toward altering the restrictive stereotypes associated with gay men.

Since the competition’s beginning, the Sydney Convicts have made sure they have been able to travel overseas and compete.

Dublin will be no different providing the community supports the team as they have so eagerly done in the past.

The Convicts will be holding an open day for players old and new on 3 February. Visit www.sydneyconvicts.org and look under upcoming events for details. If you want to play, email [email protected]

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