Homegrown Court downs Aussies

MOST of the men playing in the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand dreamt for years about representing their country on the sport's biggest stage.

Ireland's Tom Court is one of the exceptions.

Court is a born-and-bred Queenslander who grew up in Brightview and attended school in Lowood.

The former shot put star only started playing rugby union as a 24-year-old as a way to lose weight, but soon impressed with his size and athleticism.

After a handful of games for the Queensland Reds, he moved to Ireland, the birthplace of his grandparents, and continued his rugby career.

He impressed enough to be picked for the Irish Test team in 2009 and has since earned 23 caps for the Emerald Isle.

The 31-year-old's most recent appearance for Ireland was in its historic win over Australia in their World Cup match on Saturday night.

On hand to watch his substitute appearance in that game was his proud father Barry Court.

Mr Court said the large Irish contingent at the game made for a tremendous atmosphere.

"It was good - just the noise and the atmosphere was excellent," Mr Court said.

"Being there to watch it was a great experience."

While starting on the bench against the Wallabies, Court started on the field against America in an earlier pool match.

It might have been strange seeing his son compete against the Wallabies, but Mr Court said the family was proud of his son's achievements.

"He's put in a lot of hard work and training to get where he is," Mr Court said.

Mr Court said he will try to fly over to New Zealand again to see his son play if the team progress through to further rounds.



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