Francois Hougaard is talking through the tattoos which cover his arms, legs and torso. Underneath the rose gold Rolex and designer clothing, the ink tells the story of triumph and tragedy for a Springbok who has found his place in a quiet corner of the Worcestershire countryside.
A date — 21.11.2009 — marks the day he made his Springbok debut. The roman numerals — DCCCVII — record his cap number. The image of Greek god Poseidon represents his selection for the 2016 Olympics.
Alongside his sporting journey, there are Greek scripts, gemstones and koi fish associated with good luck. The most pertinent, however, is the text on his bicep about cherishing life. It reads: "Every person’s life is a fairytale written by God’s hands. Honour your character and embrace your life experiences."...
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