Rugby

Small pays last respects to Lomu

2015-11-19 09:05
James Small and Jonah Lomu duel in the 1995 RWC final (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - James Small, Jonah Lomu’s direct opponent in the 1995 Rugby World Cup final, has paid his respects after the All Black wing passed away suddenly on Wednesday.

Lomu, who for decades battled the kidney disease that ended his career, died suddenly at his Auckland home.

Small and Lomu squared off at Ellis Park 20 years ago, when the Springboks beat the All Blacks 15-12 to lift the Webb Ellis Cup.

Lomu had taken the tournament by storm where his combination of speed and power stunned opponents.

At his peak, the 1.96m (six foot five inch) Lomu weighed 120kg and could cover 100m in 10.8 seconds.

Many pundits doubted whether Small, 1.82m and 89kg, would be able to contain Lomu in that final, but he did so with aplomb as the Boks notched arguably their finest ever win.

Lomu played 63 Tests on the wing for New Zealand from 1995 to 2002, scoring 37 tries, but never crossed the whitewash against the Springboks.

Small, who played 47 Tests between 1992 and 1997, took to Twitter to pay his last respects to Lomu, writing: A privilege to be held in the same breath.. RIP big man

Read more on:    springboks  |  all blacks  |  james small  |  jonah lomu  |  rugby
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