The mighty Peter Mac ‘Bloods’ strutted their stuff in two hard-fought contests today as part of the 2022 Medical Research Cup at Princes Park.

Blood’s coach and Peter Mac researcher, Ryan Brown, said it was fantastic to have researchers from Peter Mac suiting up for a game of AFL against colleagues from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI), Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute and St Vincent’s Institute for Medical Research.

“COVID has meant this is the first time we’ve been able to hold the Medical Research Cup since 2019,” Ryan said.

“The day is very much about having fun, getting the researchers out of the lab and having the opportunity to meet others who have similar roles at other organisations.

“Almost half of the Peter Mac team have never played AFL footy before but the excitement and eagerness to learn people showed was really inspiring.

“The Medical Research Cup is a great chance to build relationships with colleagues from Peter Mac and elsewhere, and to have a kick of the footy at the same time,” he said.

Ryan passed on his thanks to WEHI who took the lead in organising this year’s event.

“This has been in planning for the last few months so it was fantastic to get such a beautiful day to play footy,” he said.

“A big thank you to Rhiannon Coulson from the Goel Lab at Peter Mac who has been involved behind the scenes with pulling the Bloods together and helping to coach the team.

“We had players this year who hadn’t even seen a footy ground before right through to those who played in high school and some who were playing again for the first time since 2019.

“Thank you also to Julie Blasoili for being our trainer today and to the crowd who came along – there was lots of excitement among the spectators!

“Congratulations to everyone who took part today. Winning is great but getting away uninjured is even better!” Ryan said.