Better news about rugby legend Jonah Lomu

There was concern across the rugby world when Jonah Lomu; the All Black legend who destroyed England in the 1995 Rugby World Cup with four tries in a famous semi final, revealed that he needed a second kidney transplant[2559]. It was revealed in late February that the superstar had been re-admitted to hospital. however it has been reported today 5th March 2012[2770] that Lomu has been released from hospital in a stable condition. His wife Nadenesays he is fighting a 'great battle in relation to his kidney.

Jonah Lomu who scored 37 tries for New Zealand's All Blacks in 63 tests first came to the notice of the rugby public at the 1994 Hong Kong Sevens and became the youngest player ever to appear for the All Blacks when he appeared against France in 1994.

But it was at the 1995 Rugby World Cup that the gigantic winger really made his mark. Lomu scored seven tries in five matches. He used his 120kg frame and lightning speed to devastating effect swatting English players aside like flies.

England captain Will Carling said Lomu was a freak and the sooner he went away the better but the English public took Lomu to their hearts. He famously appeared in a TV ad for Pizza Hut with Rory Underwood, one of the English backs he had demolished in that famous semi final. The TV ad shows Underwood as a little boy begging Lomu for a slice of pizza. Lomu pushes him effortlessly aside. It is only when Underwood summons his mother that the giant is finally subdued.

Lomu's size and speed were such that he literally ran over the opposition. There seemed no way of stopping him. The sight of opposition players hanging off him or laying trampled in his wake while he ran unerringly on for the try line was a sight to behold. At the height of his career he was the biggest draw in rugby and added thousands to the gate when ever he played.

By 1996 Lomu was  showing signs of Nephrotic Syndrome, the debilitating kidney disease that would deprive him of what should have been his best years. He appeared in the 1999 World Cup but in May 2003 the New Zealand Rugby Football Union announced that he was undergoing dialysis three times per day. Doctors warned that he would be wheelchair bound if a kidney transplant was not performed. He received a transplant in 2004 given by the Wellington radio presenter Grant Kereama.

Jonah attempted various comebacks and there were hopes he would be OK to take part in the 2007 Rugby World Cup but it became clear he would not make it. He retired from Rugby in 2007 but came back in 2009 to play at no.8 for French federale 1 team Marseille Vitrolles.

His superstar status meant there were plenty of offers. He is said to have turned down a multi million dollar offer to play american football and another to play the villain Gabor in the James Bond movie The World Is Not Enough. He can even boast his own Playstation game The Jonah Lomu Rugby Challenge. 

Now Lomu  has revealed in New Zealand Woman's Weekly that the transplanted kidney has failed and that he needs another transplant. It is sad news. The thoughts of the rugby world are with him. [2559]