Rugby world left to wonder how to stop 149kg Tuilagi from close range
By Rugby Onslaught

Rugby world left to wonder how to stop 149kg Tuilagi from close range

You do not need to be a physicist to know that it is hard to stop a 149kg player near the try line when they have a full head of steam.

That is going to a problem for any team playing Perpignan, and maybe even France, for many seasons to come with 18-year-old Posolo Tuilagi announcing himself to the rugby world this past season. This breakthrough season culminated in the lock scoring the opening try in Perpignan’s Top 14 access match against Grenoble on Saturday at the Stade des Alpes.

Perpignan pulled off this set-move in the opening minutes of the match and, just like any under-12s game, the general crux of the move is ‘give it to the big one.’ With a lineout about ten meters from the Grenoble line, the Catalan outfit set up for a driving maul, only for Tuilagi to come charging from the back of the lineout to wrap around the maul. Even then there were plenty of players in position to stop him, but none could make an impact on the No5 as he stream rolled his way over the line.

Already a France under-20 international, the son of Henry Tuilagi could find his way into the Test team during the next World Cup cycle, which could potentially lead to the world seeing the biggest second row partnership in the history of the game, with Toulouse’s Emmanuel Meafou also qualifying for France after the World Cup (or even possibly before). Meafou is a paltry 145kg compared to Tuilagi, but does stand at 6ft 8in compared to Tuilagi’s 6ft 4in. That combination might actually be too impractical though, particularly when it comes to lineouts.

Perpignan went on to win the match 33-19, meaning they will remain in the Top 14 next season and the rest of the league will have to try and work out how to stop Tuilagi as a result.

Take a look at the try: