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Thursday, December 22, 2005


Rugby Personalities: Lomu seeks speed with sprint ace
By Graeme Gillespie
Thursday, December 22, 2005

Jonah Lomu has turned to former Olympic sprint champion Linford Christie in an attempt to fast-track his career back to the big time.

Christie became the oldest man to win the Olympic 100m title when he triumphed at the 1992 Barcelona Games at the age of 32. His reputation was tarnished, however, when seven years later he tested positive for a banned anabolic steroid.

Despite traces of nandrolone being found in a urine sample, Christie has always denied the claims.

Lomu is now hoping to recapture his explosive power and pace under the guidance of Christie. The pair held their first training session at the weekend and will continue to work together over the coming weeks.

"I met Linford a few years ago when we were both doing promotional work," said Lomu who made his first start for the Cardiff Blues a fortnight ago. "We've kept in touch and he kindly offered to help me out with his expertise.

"It's too good an opportunity to miss."

He is also expected to work with another Olympic track champion, relay gold medallist Darren Campbell, through the connection with Christie. If Lomu can increase his pace he will become all the more dangerous as an attacking weapon for the Blues.

So far his main impact has been to create opportunities for others, with defenders being drawn to him like moths to a flame.

Blues captain Rhys Williams benefited last weekend when he scored the first try in his side's 43-16 victory over Calvisano at the Arms Park.

Two Italians drifted wide to cover Lomu, leaving a gaping hole for his skipper Williams to sail through.

"It's great to play alongside him," said Williams.

"He's obviously going to attract a few defenders and if we can use him as decoy, it makes a hell of a difference. It benefits the team and he's happy with it and we are happy to be scoring tries."

The Press, New Zealand
Jonah's dream was to be a WP player!!!!!  
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