Friday 24 November 2017

Wallace swaps the sun for Hamilton rain

IT'S going to be a hell of an adjustment for Paddy Wallace this weekend, who has just swapped a sunny beach in Portugal for the wind and rain of Hamilton.

Wallace was unlucky to miss out on original selection after an excellent season with Ulster, but was called out following injury to Gordon D'Arcy in the 22-19 Second Test defeat by New Zealand last weekend and comes straight into the No 12 jersey.

He had been keeping himself in shape with former Ulster player Stephen Bell, now a personal fitness trainer, but was not ready for the call when it came.

"I was enjoying some sun in Portugal," said Wallace yesterday. "I didn't cop on when Gordon went off, and we actually went to the beach and left the phones in the apartment. When I came back there was a long list of missed calls.

"It was obviously a long journey getting out here -- and I was delayed in Auckland yesterday -- so it has been a long three days, but it is just great to be here.

"I'm fairly shocked and surprised to be honest, but delighted at the same time. Sitting on a beach in Portugal three or four days ago I certainly never thought I would be playing in a Test the following weekend."

Irish Independent

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