Diego Dubard, The Lelos's fan from Brazil

06-Mar-2014

Diego Dubard is a rugby player from Brazil. It is well known that football in Brazil is not just a number one sport, but it is something beyond that, therefore one can’t often hear about a rugby player from this Country. Brazil has a Rugby National Team and a 7’s side as well - in active preparations for Rio 2016 games.

 

Diego’s first interaction with rugby was back in 1996, when his France-based cousin asked him if he wanted to play – “Sure, I said, and the very next thing he did was to throw me a rugby ball and tackle me. I was just 12 years old and did not like it. Well, he gave me a Springboks Jersey after that, so I was not angry anymore.” 

 

Diego actually started playing rugby in 2007 – “I was practicing a lot and was reading much about rugby. I played forwards in my club and soon became skipper to my team, while playing #8. At that time we had a Portuguese coach – José Alpuim, who played in Portugal's most famous club, Direito. He was trying to change our way of play, no more forwards phases only get the ball and give it to the backs, I did not like it though. He told us stories about how strong Georgia was, the mauls and scrums and I, as a forward just loved it and from that time started following the Georgian Rugby. Soon I discovered that Gorgodze was named the best foreign player in Top 14 and that he played for Barbarians as well. Also I heard that every self-respecting French team would have a Georgian prop in their squad. And thus I moved from third to the first row and became a prop.”

 

In 2012, Diego got his first Georgian jersey – his girlfriend’s father, who at that time was the Ambassador of Brazil to Georgia, bought it for him.

 

TEST WITH ARGENTINA

 

In 2013, Diego traveled to San Juan, Argentina, to support his team – The Lelos.

“As I wanted very much to meet “our guys” in person, I went to the team hotel before the game. I waited in a lobby for a while, before I saw Vazha Khutsishvili. I approached him and said that I was the Lelos fan from Brazil. At first he could not believe me, but after I showed him my Lelos’ Jersey he got even surprised. Then I met one of the team manager – Oto Iashvili. We spoke a lot about “our” team and then he asked the players to sign my Jersey.

 

 “I met LevanChilachava and other players. Most of them kept asking me if I was prop (It was an honor for me to be asked by the Georgians players about my playing position). We have lost that test against Argentina, but I won several good memories.”

 

OUR TEAM

 

I know that The Lelos aren't as strong as the All Blacks, South Africa and England, but I don't care. I don't think we must support only the winners, rugby is bigger than that, rugby is about playing with your heart, live with and for the game, work hard and have fun.

 

“The Lelos are in my heart, for the way they saw me as a friend in Argentina. And the respect they had for me.”

 

OUR ANTHEM

 

By means of social media, I met some people from Georgian Rugby Fan Club. We always talk and share comments and feelings about the upcoming matches; what we did right or wrong in the previous ones etc. One of them is trying to teach me some Georgian as well.

I want to learn how to sing the National Anthem, because one day, when in Tbilisi at the stadium watching the LELOS playing, I will sing the anthem as loud as I if I was born a Georgian.”

 

 

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