In a powerful display of unity, Australians have rallied behind the Mark Hughes Foundation to raise $3.1 million in the quest to defeat brain cancer across the 2019 NRL Beanie for Brain Cancer Round.
This year’s Beanie for Brain Cancer campaign urged fans to buy an MHF Beanie at all NRL matches or donate online with the aim of raising $3 million for research and surpassed that figure this afternoon.
All proceeds raised are directed straight to research and it’s only through innovation and teamwork that better treatments will be found for brain cancer patients.
MHF Founder Mark Hughes said the beanie round had once again exceeded expectations.
"Having the whole NRL Community on our side is so powerful. The funds raised is astonishing and the awareness that brain cancer receives from this and the spinoff the foundation gets - it goes on all year round."
"Our Scientific Committee now has the task of allocating this money as we continue our work towards a cure, with the next funding round opening around Australia at the end of August.
"This week, you have all given brain cancer patients and families hope for the future. What we have seen is bigger than a game of football. It has been a tidal wave of support and I can’t thank everyone enough."
NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said the generosity and goodwill shown by fans, players, coaches and the entire rugby league community had been "nothing short of incredible."
"Brain Cancer remains a killer but hopefully the funds raised across the weekend will help find a cure to tackle this disease once and for all."
The NRL Beanie Round concept was the creation and continues the legacy of former Nine Rugby League Executive Producer Matt Callander, who was lost to brain cancer in 2017, with 2019 the third running of the round.
170,000 MHF beanies were sold during the Beanie for Brain Cancer campaign.