Maro Itoje with his father EfePhoto: Instagram
In a sport that requires ferocious power and unrelenting drive, it is no surprise that the hulking figure of Maro Itoje has become England’s latest rugby sensation.
Although his 6ft 5in, 18st 4lb physique suggests a lifetime spent in the gym in pursuit of his dream, however, he is just as likely to be found writing poetry while his friends practise on the pitch.
Other perhaps surprising interests include classical singing, the opera, visiting art galleries and debating foreign policy.
But a glance at the aspirational background of this 21-year-old son of immigrant parents from Nigeria shows that he is no ordinary sportsman.
His eye-catching talent as a youngster saw him awarded a sports scholarship to £36,000-a-year public school Harrow.
With it came a warning from his parents that if he neglected his studies he could forget about rugby.
As well as being told to put his schoolwork first, he was also given stern advice that he would have to ‘fight extra hard’ for opportunities because he belonged to an ethnic minority.
Maro Itoje takes part in an England rugby training session in Bagshot, SurreyThe player heeded the wise words and was yesterday hailed as a future England captain after being included for the first time in the starting line-up of the Six Nations team that will play Ireland tomorrow.
He has already captained his club side Saracens in the Aviva Premiership, and captained England’s under-20 side during their victory at the Junior World Championship in 2014.
In keeping with his family’s advice, Itoje – nicknamed ‘the chosen one’ by teammates – shuns partying and insists that rugby is just one in a long list of interests.
He was born in Camden, North London, after his parents Efe and Florence moved to Britain after marrying in Nigeria.
While studying at St George’s, a boarding school …Read More
Source:: PM Newspaper