Jonah Lomu's world famous try scored against England at the 1995 Rugby World Cup. Jonah Lomu has been honoured as the World Cup's greatest player and described as rugby's version of Muhammad Ali. With the help of Rugby World Cup winner John Smit and former England captain Will Carling, Britain's Guardian newspaper compiled their list of the tournament's top 50 players over the first seven tournaments. Not surprisingly, Lomu, the star of the 1995 tournament in South Africa who fronted strongly again four years later in Europe, headed the list from England skipper Martin Johnson and livewire Australian David Campese.
Jonah the freak, as Will Carling dubbed him. Jonah the sport-changer never mind the game-changer. Jonah, the Muhammad Ali of rugby, the man who transcended the narrow confines of the sport, known far beyond the normal reach of rugby.
Lomu was something else entirely. And who knows just how prolific he would have been if he had not been struck down by that horrible kidney illness at a comparatively early stage in his career. He played through the 1995 World Cup with his illness where his Doctor advised he stop playing but determined and with such a love for the game Lomu played on with a minimal or 30% strength.
We can cite his stats as some sort of evidence of his prowess – 37 tries in 63 tests is none too shabby. But figures will only tell you so much. Running 100 metres in under 10.8 seconds weighing over 120kgs at that, Lomu was made like none had ever seen before and still to this day none have come close.
It remains clear Lomu is a Global Superstar and is held in the highest regards, not just throughout England but everywhere in the world, he's adored and admired for his efforts both on and off the field, people all over the world continue to be the supportive fan family and Lomu in return always takes time on the streets wherever he is in the world and even interacts too through his social media pages taking time out with his fans as often as he can. Twenty years on and he's busier then ever before with so many exciting things to be shared globally very soon!
Jonah Lomu has taken part in the haka, in Covent Garden, London, ahead of the Rugby World Cup.
“It’s always an honour to perform the haka, whether you’re representing your nation in front of 80,000 people or performing for a group of unsuspecting rugby fans,” Lomu said.
It's even been a really special moment for me having my wife, Nadene and my two boys Brayley and Dhyreille present to watch me perform the haka in London's iconic Covent Garden.
"I didn't think I would perform the haka again," Lomu said. "My two sons have never seen me do the haka before and this has brought it to life for me. It is something special for them as previously they have only seen videos."
Lomu, as a Mastercard ambassador for the tournament, had a stormy relationship with his own father, but after words from Nadene and her example of forgiveness and love, she clearly mended torn hearts after 17 years apart. Lomu's father died two years ago but the rift was non existent and Lomu's son's Brayley and Dhyreille as well as Lomu and his wife, all had memories to cherish. Lomu has said he's determined to make the most of his own sons.
My two sons have never seen me do the haka before and this has brought it to life for me. It is something special for them. "I do want to see them grow into grown men and I pray my health condition will allow me to do so, through the will of the man above," said Lomu.
"Whether they play rugby or not doesn't matter. I just want them to be healthy and to grow. One thing as a dad you don't want is for them to come to any harm or anything bad to happen to them.
"The illnesses and pain I'm going through, I don't want them to experience that, no dad wants that.
"This [the World Cup trip] is a great experience for them. This is where rugby started, so what a way to take two kids on a journey.
"I'm their dad and I'm trying to set an example and my beautiful wife ensures I do everything I need to do."
Indeed Lomu, who sports tattoos of his two boys names on his right arm and that of his wife on his left one, said Nadene - who Lomu revealed is responsible for Dhyreille's name, coming up with it at 1:00am while pregnant and eating pizza - is an immeasurable support to him.
"Rugby has prepared me for the challenges of life, but the most important thing is that your pillars are rock solid and the family keeps you in great stead," said Lomu.
"I am thankful that I have a beautiful wife and the kids are here. Nadene makes sure that my family stays together.
"She is my manager, my wife, my best friend and my boss!"
Lomu, scorer of 37 tries in 63 test appearances, still has enormous pull as was clear from the number of people, young and old, who sidled up and asked to have photos taken with him which he agreed to - three policemen waited for 20 minutes to have their photo taken with him.
"Its quite humbling for people to recognise me, given it is now 20 years ago since I first played in the World Cup.
"Made all the more humbling when kids come up to me and say 'I never saw you play live, but I watch you on YouTube' and other children saying they want to play like me."
Now walking the streets of England, Jonah Lomu MNZM prepares for his UNSTOPPABLE Tour as it's set to scrum down soon in a town near you in support of many different Charities. Twenty (20) years on since first making his mark as Global Superstar, the young boy that took amateur rugby to a professional level, achieved success as a Commonwealth Gold Medalist has been under high demand since landing.
Still held in high regard by the great people of England, he remains to draw crowds of all ages even at the age of 40.
Join Jonah, the Top Try Scorer in History and his team on his UNSTOPPABLE Tour, where not only will he support many charities but together with his fans he's set to making another mark in history!
Jonah Lomu MNZM, greeted by hundreds of his fans when arriving with his family at Reading Train Station, Berkshire, England, the Global Icon of World Rugby walked straight into the crowds where hundreds awaited his arrival.
Many of his fans being youngsters of all ages, the generation of whom had the pleasure of watching and cheering for Jonah as he once set foot onto the playing field creating a roar whenever he was present. Those also including the Police as they joined the queue, not able to resist the chance to meet the great man, stepping in to have photos and get the autograph of the Global Superstar.
When talking to those in attendance, many couldn't believe the great Jonah Lomu MNZM was in their presence, "when we heard he was coming to town, we got the day off work, he's the greatest rugby player ever an icon to the world, we all love him and I'm so excited I got the chance to meet him" Sherryl Jones said.
Other's just couldn't believe their eyes, saying he's a really nice, very humble and takes time with everyone, it was nice to see his family too said Martin Cooper.
Jonah Lomu is still regarded as the most prolific player and highest try scorer in Rugby World Cup history and now motivates and inspires a new generation. Jonah visited Berkshire for the day where all Berkshire Rugby Clubs at Green Park in Reading gathered to celebrate World Rugby from the inaugural RWC in1987 to RWC2015. Jonah Lomu MNZM was their chosen one and to be toured around Berkshire with his family on the double decker Berkshire Rugby Bus.
"It was a priviledge to be chosen and an honour to be part of. I got to meet so many great people of Berkshire, their club players, kids of all ages and families too with a solid 4 hours of photos, signings and selfies, it was a fun day for everyone including my wife and two sons Brayley and Dhyreille, they made some new friends too. I just wanted to thank all the people of Berkshire that made us all feel so welcome". Jonah Lomu MNZM.
Lomu's heading to America for the first time yet, so the countdown continues with almost 4 weeks to go before touchdown, the excitement has lifted to a level above all, a Lomu level I guess you could call it.
Rugby's first true Global Superstar Jonah Lomu MNZM is set to walk the streets of Utah, Salt Lake City, where he will join the wonderful locals and VIP guests for a Gala Dinner. "It's an honour for me and to have my wife with me, she's my manager too Lomu says with a smile, but a chance to meet many great people on this trip and to see the true beauty within Salt Lake City is exciting for us both".
When briefly talking to Jonah about his life, well...there would never be enough pages in a book if he were to write it all down, it wouldn't matter how many chapters or even how many editions he wrote, this guy has such an extraordinary story to share of his many achievements and experiences both on and off the pitch. The life he lived as a young boy growing up in the streets of South Auckland, New Zealand, the boy he once was...who grew up fast, he had no choice on that. Fighting for survival, to keep his shoes on his feet, the jacket on his back as he slept in bus shelters with no place to go at the age of 14.
Thinking back, Jonah shares dark memories of the days and cold, tough nights of sleeping on the streets. Hard to even imagine as I listen to him talking. A young boy that had no one to help him, no place to turn for warmth, the bus shelter was it! Nothing good could come of staying on the streets either he tells, I was kicked out of home for protecting my mum, that's no secret but on the streets, I knew the only one I could rely on was myself.
Jonah knew, if he wanted something, a better life, a life to do something with himself; there wasn't anyone that would hand it to him, there wasn't anyone to help him do something good either, he knew he had to make it happen, so he did!
The Gala Dinner is set to be a fantastic evening to share with the legendary Jonah Lomu MNZM; the youngest ever to wear the All Black Jersey at the age of just 19 years and 45 days. Join in on an unforgettable evening. A Global Superstar to the World, an Inspiration, an Icon and a friend to his great global fan family whom he remains thankful for, a guy who has never forgotten where he came from!
Gala Dinner proudly brought to you by Jonah Lomu 7one5 and Domain Sports Media. With thanks to all sponsors.
I'll keep it short this time my friends as I know the world keeps us all so busy busy but come join me on KICCA, check out the latest news there linked in with my official site www.kicca.com/jonahlomu is where I'll be posting live time messages and more. With so many cool things coming up, Team Lomu are excited to soon be sharing it all with you so we do look forward to welcoming you onboard as part of our KICCA family too. Till then be safe...
Jerry, I still can't believe it, so hard to believe you have gone!
I was only talking about you the night of your accident. My wife and I boarded a plane in London after spending some time with your team mate.
Within minutes of being grounded in Dubai we couldn't believe what we were hearing! You, Alana and your baby girl have been in our constant thoughts and Ayla in our prayers, still can't believe it, such a tough pill to swallow.
May you travel home safely Jerry to your final resting place, so many great times we had in our playing days, it only seems like yesterday. I still remember the first time you jumped in my truck while we would cruise around in our Canes days, the song you asked me to play....
This ones for you uso, my brother my friend.
May you and Alana Rest In Peace and may your baby Ayla be blessed with strength, endless love and support.
My wife Nadene and I send our deepest of thoughts and condolences to the families of Jerry and Alana at such a difficult time, till we meet again my brother, till we meet again, your friend Jonah.
Arguably the most famous rugby player in history, Lomu made his debut appearance in Hong Kong in 1994, giving Hong Kong Sevens fans a privileged opportunity to witness a superstar in the making. Jonah Lomu won three straight Hong Kong Sevens trophies in the mid-1990s, the legend taking UNDEFEATED to a level above all.
Lomu came to Hong Kong as an unheralded youngster and exited the Sevens on the cusp of stardom. Months later he was selected as the then youngest-ever All Black at just 19 years and 45 days old, making his debut against France. The following year he cemented his reputation as rugby’s most unstoppable force by scoring seven tries at the 1995 Rugby World Cup in South Africa.
Lomu returned to the Hong Kong Sevens in 1995 and 1996 to help New Zealand to three successive tournament victories and secure himself an abiding place in Hong Kong’s sporting lore.
Winning proudly for New Zealand, taking home a Gold Medal at the 1998 Commonwealth Games and led his country to its first Rugby World Cup Sevens victory in Argentina in 2001. - Lisa Stroll.