Christophe Dominici, “incarnation of French flair” in rugby which has helped his country achieve great victories – Obituary

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Christophe Dominici, who died at the age of 48, was one of the three fastest and most prolific wing quarters in French rugby. He scored 25 tries in 67 internationals, helping his country win four championships and two Grand Slams between 1998 and 2007. He scored eight tries in three Rugby World Cups.
Tiny man, around 5ft 6in, he was described by tall All Black, Dan Carter, as “a short man but a titan in the field, the epitome of French flair”. He was notable for a painful, even dismal, facial expression on and off the pitch, which only disappeared when he scored a try or his team celebrated a victory.

Along with his pace, which he could adjust to confuse his opponents, he also had a shimmy and two-foot sidestep that often led him through or around a seemingly inaccessible wall of defenders. He was a great opportunist, ready to pounce on a loose ball or loose pass and show the defense a clean pair of heels.

He did this in dramatic fashion in France’s epic semi-final victory over the All Blacks at Twickenham at the 1999 World Cup. The French had no luck after the ruthless way the New Zealanders had sent all the opposition in the previous rounds.



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