A few years ago the England flanker took a break from captaincy duties to have a giggle with Rugby World about babies, bugbears and banter, and Marlon Brando.
RUGBY WORLD: So the European Challenge Cup starts this month, how much do you know about the three teams in your pool?
PAT SANDERSON: We played Viadana in pre-season and won 35-15 so we know about them. They were quite tough. Clermont Auvergne – or Montferrand as I know them – are a good side and I’d say they’re our main rivals. If you look at their talent pool, they’re playing in the wrong tournament, if you know what I mean. They’ve got a great squad and if they ever play like they can, they’ll be a match for anybody, so those games will be very tough. Albi [from France],I know nothing about them!
RW: You must enjoy the trips to Italy and France more than, say, Wales?
PS: At least if you go to Wales you’re back quicker! We’ve been doing it for a while now and it’s just work. It’s a good experience to play the French sides away because there are good crowds, partisan crowds. From the outside it may look like a holiday but they’re hard trips.
Banter, Practical jokes and Injuries
RW: You must have good banter on those trips, though?
PS: We have great banter at our club – we’re world-class at it. Everyone gets stick all the time and we’ve all got a very crass humour; it’s not subtle at all.
RW: What about practical jokers?
PS: Oh, there are too many to mention. The Fortey brothers – Chris and Lee, Matt Powell, Lee Best, and we’ve signed Ryan Powell. The list goes on.
RW: Have there been any good practical jokes recently?
PS: The other week there was a great one – it’s still cracking me up now. Kai Horstmann rents a house off Matt Powell and Matt went round and nicked Kai’s dogs. Kai was devastated. He was up round the park shouting their names because he thought they’d got out from the garden. It was very funny.
RW: What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen on a rugby pitch?
PS: Lee Best dislocating his finger against Sale was pretty funny. He was just running around holding his finger in the air and pointing at it!
The joys of fatherhood
RW: How’s your son? Is he like his dad?
PS: Not if his mother has anything to do with it! Max is great and is really coming into his own now. He’s six months now so he’s got more about him and his personality is coming through.
RW: And are you still timing yourself when changing his nappies?
PS: No, I got bored of that! The best thing now is he sleeps through the night.
RW: What’s your earliest memory?
PS: Falling off a horse into some nettles when I was very, very young. I don’t remember if I cried, just the nettles.
RW: Are you a legs, bum or breasts man? And who’s your ideal woman?
PS: Legs, and my wife Nicky.
RW: You and Nicky run a chocolate fountain company – have there been any disasters with that?
PS: Loads. They’re not great in the wind – the chocolate blows all over the place.
Phobias, Bugbears and Role models
RW: Do you have any phobias?
PS: No, not really. Although my wife’s just said tidying up!
RW: What about bugbears?
PS: I’ve got too many of those to mention! I’m hugely intolerant.
RW: Do you wax or shave any body parts apart from your face?
PS: My right shoulder because I strap it.
RW: If a film was made of your life, who would play you?
PS: Ooh, that’s a good question. I’ll say Marlon Brando. I don’t think I look like him in the slightest, but he’s very cool.
RW: Who’s your role model and why?
PS: My dad because he’s my dad.
Learn more about Pat’s teammates at Worcester…Like Rugby World? Subscribe to the magazine for the latest comprehensive content.