First up. Excuse if this blog is spelled or grammarised even worse than usual. I'm not at my laptop til weds so writing this on my phone.
We lost another rugby legend today. Joost van der Westhuizen has ultimately list his courageous battle against Motor Neurone Disease (ALS as its known in some parts)
Joost was one of them players that the opposition fans hated. Supremely talented, fast, a pinpoint pass. He was a revolutionary in a 9 jersey, in my eyes, the best 9 in the modern era. He could tackle (1995, he was the man who stopped Jonah) he could do everything! He had a swagger about him that only gets seen in true stars of any sport. He was a handsome devil too. Plenty of reasons as to why he was hated by the opposition. But it was surely hate born from jealousy? Respect? Who knows.....I'd have adored him if he were English.
Over the past few years, he has been at the forefront of many MND fundraisers and despite his condition, kept himself visible and vocal, he took the fight right back to the disease and never retreated or hidden the dark side from people. The visions of him in a wheelchair with his family made far more of an impact on me than the ice bucket challenges.
He actually took himself to Facebook and Twitter a few weeks ago when erroneous reports of him being in intensive care surfaced and he even styled that out with some cheeky bravado.
45 years old is no age. My thoughts and condolences are with Joost's loved ones.