Mathieu Bastareaud makes comeback after 10 months out
Mathieu Bastareaud made his return to action over the weekend, ten months after it looked as though his career might be over.
Just days after his 34th birthday, the former France centre ran out for his former club Toulon on Sunday having signed for them last week. This marked his first appearance since rupturing the quadriceps tendons in both legs last November while playing for Lyon. That injury actually came against Toulon at the Stade Mayol, where he only lasted five minutes in what was also a return to action following a hand injury.
It was at the same ground that he made his return on Sunday, although now donning a Toulon jersey, against ASM Clermont as the hosts won 30-29. This is of course a ground that he knows well, having spent eight trophy laden years there between 2011-19. However, the Frenchman was a centre in his first stint at Toulon, rather than his new position at No8.
He lasted 49 minutes in his return before being replaced by none other than Sergio Parisse. He will obviously take some time to get back into the swing of things, but he still did plenty of good work during his time on the field. RugbyCoach8 has recently shared a highlights reel of his display:
Plenty of people would have wondered if Bastareaud was going to make a return to action having endured a number of serious injuries over the past few years. Indeed a social media post after initially sustaining the injury last year suggested he could retire. He wrote: “It’s a huge blow. Now, it’s a long road that awaits me and I know I’m well surrounded with my family, my loved ones and the club. I will take the time it takes to get back to 100%… and as for my future, I give myself time to think about it. I also wanted to thank you all for your messages of support during these last days.”