Thomas Appleton is a typical Portuguese rugby player. Dentist with an Ultra Brite smile, a real handsome kid, a good young player, captain of Wolves and Lusitanos
Thomas Appleton is a typical Portuguese rugby player. A dentist with a super-bright smile, a real handsome kid, a good little player, captain of Wolves and Lusitanos
“The local players have a culture of speed and presentation. They are less ‘conquering’ oriented, and rely on real technical qualities, as their coach Patrice Laguesquet appreciates. We are able to prepare launches and combinations very quickly. We have a lot of variations in our blocks and movements. They have no problem with “That. They have a high IQ, and this ability to understand quickly. Once you understand things, there is no problem with them.”
A facilitating form of enlightened amateurism, which also stems from the intellectual professions practiced by half of the Portuguese contingent operating in the country. “When you are constantly mentally stimulated, it is easy to get stuck. We are used to this multiplicity of information in our heads.” The elitist character of this system, as also in Argentina or Chile, explains the social roots of rugby in Portugal. “And it is a problem for us. This division allows only a few people access to rugby, when all the energy is needed. »
For the multi-talented three-quarter of the Centro Desportivo Universiatrio Lisboa (CDUL), who also holds two Master’s degrees in Oral Surgery and Implantology, this dual vocation is like a priesthood. “The most important thing is time management. I’ve always lived with that, at school, and in rugby, where I started playing when I was 6 years old. Whether it was my studies or rugby, it was more difficult every time. But we got used to it. “And he asks for more.
It is no coincidence that Patrice Laguesquet chose to make him his captain. “He’s a great personality. He’s charismatic, he’s creative, he’s talented at all levels. Then it takes me back to the time of my hobby, when I started. I can make the connection and understand these issues.” Portuguese rugby is as much about the head as it is about the legs.