First Dates barman Merlin Griffiths reveals he is battling cancer
He's been told he has a 75% chance of living beyond five years.
First Dates barman, Merlin Griffiths, has revealed that he is battling stage three bowel cancer.
Merlin, who has become a star of the show as the man who tries to put couples at ease and help break the ice as he prepares a drink for them, said that he started experiencing pain in June and was diagnosed just six weeks ago.
In an interview with the Mirror the 46-year-old dad said: "I won’t let it get the better of me."
He told the paper of the moment he revealed the news to his seven-year-old daughter, and how he simply said "Dad's got cancer."
Griffiths continued: "She said 'Is that bad, dad?'
"I said, 'Yes, it’s very serious but I think it should be OK. Modern medicine’s great and if anything changes I’ll let you know.'
"She understands that people can die but I told her cancer comes in different varieties and in different ways too – and that many people come through it."
When he started getting pain in June this year, he had thought it was just a result of scar tissue in his stomach from a car accident when he was 20.
But after tests, doctors found a 4.5cm Stage 3 tumour, which he said looked "like an alien."
— Fred Sirieix (@fredsirieix1) September 18, 2021
The bartender is now set for a year of treatment after being told that he has a 75% chance of living beyond five years.
He has had his first chemotherapy and his oncologist hopes to remove the tumour in three months, before more treatment.
Griffiths has been a bartender and mixologist for more than two decades and is gearing up for another series of First Dates this year. He will however be filming under strict Covid protocols and have his own room to shield in.
He has urged others with bowel cancer concerns to get any issues or queries checked out by a doctor or their GP.