Rugby club embarks on endurance challenge to help cancer charities

A rugby club community is taking on an almighty challenge this weekend to highlight and raise funds for cancer charities.

Club president Martin Ord
Club president Martin Ord

Ruck Over Cancer, set up by Oswestry Rugby club, is based on the endurance Ironman races.

This Sunday, September 19, team members will each swim 2.4 miles in the mere in Ellesmere, nine others will cycle 112 miles around Shropshire and across the Welsh border and 10 more will run a marathon from Ellesmere, finishing at the rugby club at Park Hall.

The club set out to raise £30,000 for Prostate Cancer UK and Breast Cancer UK, and has already passed the £31,000 mark.

Members were inspired to take on the Ironman Challenge after two mums at the club were diagnosed with breast cancer and the club president was diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Rugby coach Stewart Johnson, who is doing the marathon, said his wife Liz had thankfully been given the all clear after her tumour was removed.

"Doing this challenge has helped us all and has been a real team effort. We want to raise awareness of the importance of early diagnosis as well as raising money," he said.

"It has also been great training and getting fitter. I myself have lost a stone in weight.

"The support from local businesses has been outstanding, we can't thank them enough."

President Martin Ord said: “I have been diagnosed with prostate cancer and have been touched by the support of everyone connected with our amazing club at Oswestry.

“This is going to be a huge challenge and it will be an emotional day for us, but if we manage to help save just one life by raising awareness or, monies raised support the development of testing methods for the early detection of prostate cancer, all of the effort will be worth it."

At 75, Martin is the oldest person taking on the challenge, opting for the swim.

The youngest, another swimmer, is Millie Hann, a junior player, who is 17.

To help Oswestry Rugby Club continue to raise money visit justgiving.com/team/oswestry-rugby-club-ruck-over-cancer.

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