YOU can say what you like about Bruce Aitchison, and most people usually do! But you can’t doubt the effervescent Murrayfield Wanderers coach’s enthusiasm for all things rugby related.
Here he explains why he has dedicated his 38th birthday to organising a rugby match and fun day on behalf of Cahonas Scotland, a charity which exists to educate people about the signs and symptoms of male cancers and the importance of early detection, to remind them to regularly self-check their testicles and to reduce embarrassment and stigma relating to male cancers.
I’ve thought about this for too long. I’ve chewed over how to start and what to say and decided to get on with it. I think a lot. And talk a lot. And a chance has come for me to do more. For me and hopefully others too. So, here goes.
It started with an invite to do the Great North Run for CAHONAS. I got the message and told Nikki. I asked if she thought it was a good idea. I hadn’t finished the question before she said ‘YES’. I needed this invite, sometimes you need a push. I needed a push. What started as a half marathon has grown. I want others to see me, the guy who hardly runs the length of himself, train and beat the two hour mark in September. But unlike Forrest, I want to do more than just run.
The money I raise will go towards creating a resource for awareness of testicular cancer in youth rugby teams and schools throughout the land. I’m excited about being involved in that. I’m excited to get people talking about testicular cancer. It might help someone. I like to help others. And now I can.
This Saturday we are #PlayingwithCAHONAS at Murrayfield.
It started by organising a game with guys I have played with and against, coached and been coached by, met through rugby and all sorts of other ways, too. When I sent out the messages to ask if boys were keen I tended to get one of three replies, or a mixture of the three –
- No way you are only going to be 38!
- I’ll check with my wife and/or
- I don’t have to play a full game, do I?
I am hugely grateful to each and every one for agreeing to come along and get involved. And then the snowball started. I wanted everyone to feel part of the day, so Kirsty & Carl McWilliam of RugbyTots agreed to do a taster session for kids. I coached Carl at Watsonians and my daughter Katy is in his class, it’ll be brilliant and Katy is really looking forward to taking part, but most of all seeing Carl play!
David Edge at the SRU has been great in his support and we will have a Tartan Touch session from 1.30pm to 2.30pm that is for everyone to get involved with.
I asked Sharon Martin to perform her song and was delighted when she agreed!
Afterwards the clubhouse will be busy and there will be raffle tickets for sale and an auction with some fantastic prizes! And maybe even a birthday cake! I can’t wait!
All in the name of raising awareness and funds for testicular cancer.
And when Saturday is over, I’ll start running more. September will be here before I know it. I’ll go from #PlayingwithCAHONAS to #RunningwithCAHONAS and be delighted to have helped others.
Thank you to Ritchie Marshall at CAHONAS for all of his help and support.
Happiness is Egg Shaped
There is a raft of weel kent faces from the Scottish club scene taking part in Saturday’s match, and a few internationalists for good measure -.
|15||Fraser Harkness||Gordon Lyon / Niall Lear||Ben Addison||Neil Chisholm|
|14||Graham Thomson||Euan Robertson||Dougie Gray||Cathal Lampah|
|13||Malcolm Clapperton||Ben Addison||Jamie Mayer||Gav Douglas|
|12||Lindsey Graham||Jamie Blackwood||Chris Dove||Callum Hanratty|
|11||Rory Couper||Gav Sharp||Conan Sharman||Adam Broatch|
|10||Bruce Aitchison (Bill Lothian)||Carl McWilliam||Gav Douglas||James White|
|9||Callum Cusiter||Allan Imrie||Rupeni Ragia||Dougie Roberts|
|8||Neil McCallum||Roger Hastings / Scott Stronach||Greig Ryan||Rick Howes|
|7||Hovis Brown||Pieter Fourie / Robert Lloyd||Gav Brown||Chris Wands|
|6||Mark Lee||Duncan Harrison||Darren Burns||Matt Stevens|
|5||Richy Maxton||Mark Dow / Roy Smith||Campbell Rae||John Szkudro / Kelman Chambers|
|4||Fred Stevenson||Aaron Iddins||Craig Deacons||Stuart Johnson|
|3||Alan Brown||Kev Wyness||Barry Stewart||Steven Park|
|2||Brodie Smithers||Kev Stuart / Nigel Sheehan||Fred Main||Eric Milligan|
|1||Dan O’Connell||Mark Billingham / Richard Mann||Gav Blackburn||Gareth Edwards Glynn|