The Toulon wing on passcodes, pranks and drinks sank

Do you have any phobias?

I don’t like snakes and I don’t really like cats very much. I just don’t trust them. Something about the way they move… and they could scratch your face!

You were back in Oz recently. What did you get up to?

I rode my motorbike. I didn’t get much time, with family obligations, but it’s at Mum and Dad’s place. I ride a scooter in France, but it isn’t the same.

Is that what you’d save if your house was on fire?

No, I’d save my phone and definitely the charger. It feels like it needs juice every 30 minutes. And I wouldn’t want someone to find it – passcodes are key!

Do you have any hidden talents?

If I told you they wouldn’t be hidden…

Which team-mate would you like to trade places with?

I’d switch with Matt Giteau, because I know what his new contract’s worth. I’d just swim in all the money!

Who are the jokers in the Toulon squad?

Maybe it’s me…

Can you tell us about any pranks?

I stitched up a few of our All Black boys not so long ago. I told them that my school had been on a real losing streak and they needed some good luck messages to “end the drought”. A few of them, including Chris Masoe and Ali Williams, agreed to do it. But then I sent them to the Wallabies before the last Bledisloe game!

How is your French coming on?

In my first season we did an hour a week of lessons in a class, with four or five of us. It’s hard to retain. But I’m making the most of it now I’ve signed a new deal to stay here. I still hate homework, though.

What’s Mourad Boudjellal like?

Pretty private and quiet. But passionate about the rugby here.

What’s the best thing about the South of France?

It’s laid-back. We are here to play footie, but it doesn’t take over your life. And the other cultures here at Toulon, as well as the French.

So have you learnt any Afrikaans?

You do pick up a little! There are a few South African guys here and sometimes they sit together. It’s always the swear words you learn first off.

What bugs you?

My fuse is pretty short. Not aggressive, but I get irritable. Like when people don’t do things very efficiently.

Who are your three dream dinner party guests?

Cancel the dinner and have some drinks. I’d need someone to test me intellectually, so I’d have Victoria’s Secret model Karlie Kloss (below), Matt Giteau and his wife. A double date!


What can you say about your old mate the Honey Badger?

We played at the Force together and he’s gotten more Australian since then! In team meetings he struggled to retain anything ‘rugby’. One time we just started chanting a circus theme at him!

What’s been your best holiday?

I enjoyed Ibiza in the summer. I went with Josh Valentine, who plays in ProD2, and other mates from Australia.

How would you like to be remembered?

When my time’s done and I’m 6ft under, I hope it was happy and fulfilling. I’d want everyone to raise a glass.

Of what?

Bundaberg Rum and coke. Back home we say it’s like drinking the urine of angels!

This interview was published in the January 2015 edition of Rugby World. Click here for the latest subscription offers.