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Seize the day (carpe diem) – Ballard School – Headmaster’s Blog – 1st October 2015

October 1, 2015

Our visitor at jonah lomu at Ballardassembly today was Jonah Lomu, the former New Zealand all-black rugby player generally regarded as the first true global superstar of rugby union. He was visiting Ballard as part of the promotion of the Rugby World Cup but additionally as an ambassador for Naomi House children’s hospice (supported by Ballard recently). His visit caused quite a stir and also led to several photo shoots!

I hope that what will particularly remain in our memory, however, was what Jonah Lomu shared at assembly. He was asked if he had any advice for aspiring sports’ stars or for those aiming to be the very best in their particular area of interest. In one word he said, ‘discipline’. He explained that what we see on the screen (and we were treated to film of some of his greatest all-black tries) was the result of long hours of dedicated hard work which usually began at 6.00am. Mr Lomu talked about the running, cycling and weight training he did (including dragging a cricket roller around) which was all preparatory for any specific rugby training. This, he said, was illustrative of his approach to life which he commended to us: try to be all-round in so far as you have several things to fall back on if ‘the one thing’ which you really wanted did not work out. He explained that he had training and experience in marketing and banking as well as in athletics and rugby and he went on to urge everyone to work hard at their studies so as to open up as many opportunities as possible.

It’s not every day that a superstar in the world of sport visits and it was good to meet someone who was down to earth, easy to converse with and who had principles which apply to life in general. Whilst we may not all be supporting New Zealand in the rugby world cup I am sure that our estimation for the team has increased even further having listened to one of its ambassadors.

We tweet @BallardSchool

Alastair Reid (Headmaster)

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