At 25 years old Maro Itoje has had a great career already with four Premiership Titles, three Champions Cup titles, two Six Nations wins, one being a Grand Slam, and a British and Irish Lions tourist in 2017. He will no doubt tour South Africa with the Lions again in 2021 and many think he could captain the side as they hunt the scalp of the World Champions. Here are a some thinsg you may not know about the Saracens forward.
1: His full name is Oghenemaro Miles Itoje. Born in London to Nigerian parents, his father, Efe Itoje, insisted on education ‘I told him he needed to make a decision. If he wanted to play rugby then fine, but if his grades dropped I’d declare war on him.’
2: A talented athete, he played basketball, football and rugby along with athletics where he represented England u17 in shotput. Itoje admits that heartbreak in athletics has helped him in his rugby career, “The one person who did beat me was Luke Roach Christie. I don’t know where he is now or what he’s doing but every time he beat me it broke my heart.”
3: His nickname is 'The Pearl', this after he attended a Christmas social wearing a cream turtleneck and it has stuck
4: Ben Obano and Ollie Thorley are his cousins.
5: He shares his birthday with Obafemi Martins (Nigerian footballer), Ben Harper (American singer-songwriter and guitarist), Joaquin Phoenix (American actor and producer) & Frank Ocean (American singer-songwriter) amongst others