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Wednesday Apr 10, 2024

Leo the Lion dominates ex-international forward

Leinster Rugby’s mascot “Leo the Lion” has become somewhat of a mythical legend on the streets of Dublin.

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Rarely seen away from his natural habitat in Dublin 4, Leo has been known to be highly territorial.

Thus, when former Leinster, Connacht and Ireland forward Mike McCarthy challenged Leo to a one-on-one battle for supremacy at the RDS, Leo took it personally.

Clearly preparing for months, if not years, for this moment, Leo was not going to be made a fool of in front of his pack at the RDS.

What followed was a moment that will no doubt go down in rugby history.

Despite staring down a 6’5″ former secondrow, Leo showed zero or mercy for McCarthy as the two collided.

Sending the former powerhouse forward flying, Leo sent a stark reminder that he remains the alpha at the RDS.

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Such was his performance that it has now been leaked that he will start in the number 4 shirt this weekend as Leinster look to counter La Rochelle’s giant pack, namely Will Skelton.

In more controversial news, Leinster senior coach Jacques Nienaber has been rumoured to be trying to lure Leo away from Leinster with a potential move to line up for the Springboks later this season.

Steadfast in his opinion, the double Rugby World Cup-winning coach said, “I think it is pretty clear that this is another Jean Kleyn situation.” Before going on to say, “Everyone knows that Leo is a southern African lion and, as such, should be playing for South Africa.”

Such has been the discourse from this incident. It has forced Springbok head coach Rassie Erasmus to reach out to Ireland head coach Andy Farrell to smooth over the tensions ahead of the upcoming two-test series between the Boks and Ireland.

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In the end, a resolution was found, and it was agreed that Irish rugby would forgo their rights to Leo, and, in exchange, RG Snyman would become Irish eligible.

It was great to see that the world’s number one side could work alongside the world champions to resolve what could’ve been a difficult situation.

 

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A post shared by Rugby JOE (@rugbyjoe)

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