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"Automatically, you exclude yourself and you are excluded."

  • Loïc Godener

Loïc Godener talks about his injury, his rehabilitation, his selection with the Barbarians, the end of last season in Pro D2 and his return to the team.

How are your days going?

"At first, before I saw the surgeon in mid-January, my work was often in the afternoon, where I had cardio, strength training, physiotherapy for an hour. I did this program for a month, a month and two weeks. And since the appointment with the surgeon, which went very well, I took off the crutches and started doing some cycling again, cardio where I can stand, standing weights, squats, a little body. I'm taking it easy again and we'll try to keep evolving as quickly as possible. But don't take any risks either. We'll see how it goes. "

When is your come-back scheduled?

"Late March, early April. After that, that date is really if everything goes well. We'll see about that. Basically, we started at the end of the season, so as not to see too big. If I start again in April, or even at the end of April, and I can play a game or two, it will be a bonus. "

How do you hurt yourself?

"In the first half, I scratch a ball, it didn't let go right away and I hurt myself. Often, this kind of injury happens like this. It hurt a little, it pulled my thigh a little. It was supposed to be the fifth minute. I kept playing. I got tested at halftime, it was fine. And then, at some point, I try to take back a player and my ischio gives up. "

We saw you in tears after you got out. Did you feel the seriousness of your injury?

"I was disappointed. Because it was a game that was close to my heart. And, this injury, right away, I knew it was more serious than I expected. I've already ripped myself apart twice, so I knew it was at least a big ripping. So, that's it, I was mostly disappointed. It was working well at that time. And, when it works well, we want it to continue. And here we are, as we know, wounds always come at the wrong time. And it had to happen. "

Your progress has been marked by your selection with the Baa-Baas. There were rumours about the French team....

"I had done the Barbarians, I was happy. For me, the goal was to play as much as possible this season in the Top 14. I used to play games over and over again. I was lucky to have made the Baa-Baas. After that, here we are today, thinking about the French team, no. No, because I'm hurt and because there's still a lot of work to do. Today, my only goal is to get back on the field and have fun again. Then it comes, it doesn't come, I don't have to worry about it. "

Injury is also a time when you are very lonely.

"It's hard, yes. Automatically, you exclude yourself and you are excluded, because you don't compete, you don't train, you don't see friends, you only see the injured. It is true that it is not easy. But, I took a physical preparation, her name is Christine Herrera, who works in Grenoble. She does a very good job. Then, my partner, Juliette, who is here. I give him a dedication because every day at home it's complicated. The first two weeks, I was at home all the time, I couldn't move, I was lying down. When I don't normally do sports, I'm a pain in the ass. But now, when I'm lying down, I don't explain it to you... She was brave about it. Then, there I have the nutritionist, Laurent Buttaffoghi, who makes me a meal every day. There are Patick Chassaing, Robin Panisset and Benjamin Simond-Cote, who do a great job with me. And, there are the physiotherapists, there are Eudes, Rémy, Vincent, Clément and Béa, who are there every day. I even went to see acupuncture by tuning fork. I've never done that before. And on Thursday, I'm going to an abdo-pilates class. There are also positive things: I can enjoy my family, I can do more things with my girlfriend, I can do basic things that we don't have time to do when we play. The injury, of course it was hard the first two weeks. But then I accept it. It will happen. It happened and it will happen again. We do everything we can to work and come back stronger. "

It took you a long time to join the team when you arrived in 2017. How did you experience it?

"I don't regret the switch to the Pro D2, because it allowed me to improve, even if, at the beginning, it was a little bad for me to play. But here I was, I managed to play and the coach gave me more time to play. Dewald didn't know me. He had Top 14 players (Loïc Baradel, Steven Setephano, Fabien Alexandre), plus recruits, Nuku Swerling who was from Oyonnax, and Edgar Tuinukuafe who had already done a season in Pro D2. I was the new kid, out of nowhere. As I went along, I managed to scratch bits of matches and play. "

You had played a few games with the Espoirs. Are you still connected to them?

"They're great. There is a lot more talent in this team. I know a little less about this year's ones, some of them have left. I didn't know them, and right away, they put you in the picture, they're great. Besides, this year, they're having a great season. Honestly, they're great good guys. And I think there are a lot of them, not long from now, we'll hear about them. That's pretty good. "

Another highlight of your first season in Grenoble was of course the comeback. How to move from disappointment in the final to victory against Oyonnax?

"We went out frustrated. Besides, every time my family comes over, I get jerks off. So I said it was a talisman. But the leaders found the words, Fabio, Arnaud Héguy, who was injured but who was part of the staff, etc. And then, when you enter the Stade des Alpes, when it is armored, when you see "Red & Blue" everywhere, there is a 99% chance that you will win, you are fully motivated. And I think Oyonnax came in a little too confident too. We managed to make an incredible game. I think that year, in ProD2, was one of my best years in rugby. For the moment anyway. That's where I had the most fun. But this year too, even if I get hurt. Even if at Racing, I played in hopes, but to play in the professional world, there is nothing better. Anyway, here I get off every day. "