People Who Have Influenced My Life – Part 2

I only met him the once but I read his autobiography and thought, “I admire this man.” Jason Robinson, the rugby player of both codes, had anything but an easy upbringing and came so close to throwing away the opportunity his talent had brought him.
He had the good fortune to come under the influence of Va’aiga Tuigamala – a man with great moral character – in his early days at Wigan, and the good sense to heed his advice. He turned his life around, arrested the self-destructive spiral of decline and gained a sense of self-worth. This was primarily a result of his developing a strong faith under the wing of the older man.
I admire his courage in facing his painful past, admitting his failings and working so hard to be a positive role model both off the rugby pitch and on it. I met him at a training session at the height of his Rugby League playing career at Wigan, before he switched to Rugby Union and represented his country in that code as well. I remember him as quiet, serious, focused, calm and, more than anything else, modest. Not for him the arrogance and swagger of pride that can come with fame; he believed that the most important aspect of his own success was that it enabled him to help others.
In Jason Robinson I saw a selfless, generous man; one to be emulated, who showed that helping other people is worth far more than any amount of personal success.
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