AS THE stadium erupted around him after the Blues’ historic State of Origin victory on Wednesday night, Tamworth’s Lester Solomons had only one thought on his mind – beards.
Specifically, the beard of his close mate and Queensland fanatic Geoff Watson, who had just officially lost his Origin bet with Mr Solomons.
Mr Watson, who has sported face fuzz for quarter of a century, entered into a “hair-raising” bet with Mr Solomons before the series started.
He will now have a public – and no doubt humiliating – shave-off of his beloved beard after game three.
“As soon as that siren went, I just thought ‘yes’,” Mr Solomons, who was at the match, said.
“I’m just relieved I didn’t have to shave off my hair.”
The pair are using the bet to raise money for the Leukemia Foundation, with fundraising tins at Wendy’s in Shoppingworld filling fast.
For Mr Watson, the looming loss of his beard was even more concerning than the Canetoads’ loss of the series for the first time in nine years.
“My biggest worry isn’t my wife or mates, they’ll get used to it,” Mr Watson said.
“But I’ve just got a new dog and I’m worried he’ll bite me after I shave it off because he won’t recognise me.”
He said the Maroons’ loss left him “totally devastated”.
“I’ve been copping stick all day and I probably will all night,” he said yesterday.
“I even wore my Queensland jersey into work.”
The official beard shave will be held the day after Origin III at City Plaza.