Meet the rugby fresher who invaded the pitch at the Millennium stadium, only to be shoulder charged to the ground by a steward
Oh, and he doesn’t drink
Some of you may have noticed a man running across the turf at the Principality stadium during yesterday’s men’s rugby varsity match. You may also have seen his run brutally ended by one of the security staff, with a no-arms tackle that would almost certainly have been awarded a red card had it occurred on the pitch.
You’ll be surprised to learn the fresher on the receiving end of that bone shuddering hit doesn’t drink and, therefore, probably felt it a lot more than the rest of us would.
We interviewed the unfortunate soul back in October. So, meet Chuck.
So Chuck, how did you start playing rugby?
“I started playing rugby at school. I went to King’s Canterbury, and I really enjoyed it there.
“At the time it was mainly about rugby and I never really got that rugby lad vibe. I don’t drink because of my religion and culture, but during school, this never really became an issue.”
How did you find the rugby socials?
“At the beginning, I didn’t actually go to the socials, I just trained. I was a bit apprehensive about it all, due to the stigma around them.
“I wasn’t sure if they would accept me or not, being a boy from Nigeria who doesn’t drink. But the other guys encouraged me to come, mainly because I didn’t know my teammate’s names.
“I ended up really enjoying the socials. No one pressured me into drinking, in fact, they were actually really respectful.”
Were you ever uncomfortable at any point?
“As I said I wasn’t quite sure if I would fit in with the rest of the club, but they really looked after me and always offered to buy me juice on the club. I’ve actually made some really good mates because of rugby, who I seem to naturally click with.”
What did you make of the initiations?
“They were actually really fun, and the older boys were great. They bought me a case of non-alcoholic beer, which did taste disgusting, but they just wanted to make sure I wasn’t left out. It was quite funny doing triathlons with water, but at least I know I can down a drink.”
Any remarkable experiences?
“Rugby corner was great for me, because when I got lost I could always head back and see the boys, then head out on the dance floor and impress the girls with my dancing. By the way, I’m a great dancer just so you know.”
Coming to uni, what do you think of lad culture?
“I’m not keen on the idea of stereotyping lad culture with the rugby boys, or for any sport for that matter. From a person who came from a different background who didn’t drink because of my religious views, they were really welcoming. They treated me as an equal.
“The whole stereotype of rugby boys being arseholes is bullshit. I don’t think it’s fair stereotyping rugby boys because it’s the same principle as the stereotyping of race. A group is made up individuals and each individual is different.”
So there we go – not every boy in a light blue shirt and chinos will be off his face at the end of the night. Bartender, one of your finest lime and sodas please – and don’t hold back on the lime.
Updated: 14:43 6/3/17
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