Catching up with Louis Ludik

Written by Benedict Chanakira (bchanakira2)

Posted in :Original Content, Reader Submissions on 20 Mar 2014 at 10:32
Tagged with : , , , , , , ,

Our man Benedict caught up with former Sharks Louis Ludik for a quick chat about life in the French leagues.

Benedict Chanakira- Hi Louis, how are you?

Louis Ludik – I’m very good thanks. I hope you are well Benedict. Enjoying the French lifestyle a lot.

BC– How are you settling in France? Is Ross Skeate helping?

LL – I’m settling in nicely thanks, yes Skeato is helping a lot. His French is very good so he is translating for us almost the whole time.

BC– How is your French? Are you fluent yet?

LL – Hahaha. No not yet. Learning every day but it’s a tough language to learn. Enjoying it though. We have French classes twice a week.

BC– Have you managed to meet up with any ex-Sharks players based in France?

LL – Yes we have hooked up with Rory [Kockott] in Castres, Jandre Marais in Bordeaux and after games we eat with the other team so get a chance to talk to the other South Africans then. There are a lot of us here…

BC– Who has been the toughest team and player you have faced recently?

LL – Lyon and La Rochelle are very tough. We played Aurillac this last weekend and played against a wing, Albert Valentin and he gave me a big hand-off, very strong guy!

BC– What do you miss most about South Africa?

LL – I miss my family, friends and understanding what everyone is saying!

BC– You have thrived in the utility player role and you were regarded as one of the most reliable players in South Africa. Are you playing in a similar role in France or are you finding yourself in one position?

LL – Yes I also find myself in a utility role at the moment. Playing 13 a lot at the moment but would like to play 15. The fullback at Agen is a very good young player and is doing well so it’s no use leaving him out!

BC– You currently play in Top 14 D2. How are your promotion hopes looking?

LL – Yea playing in the Pro D 2. We did very well in the first half of the competition but had a couple of losses of late. We are fourth at the moment so going to be very tough to go up.

BC– France, in fact European countries, are known for their great variety in fashion. How is Chamé enjoying it?

LL – Chamé is loving it. Everything is just extremely expensive in France and we are still converting everything from € to Rand. So we have to get use to everything being much more expensive that South Africa.

BC– What destinations have you visited in your time there? What was the most appealing place?

LL – Two weeks ago we drove to Monaco and saw a couple of places on the South-East coast. We loved Nice, Cassis, saw Aix-en-Provence and saw Freddy [Michalak] and his family in Toulon. We stayed in Nimes and saw Arles as well. Unbelievable places. We are so blessed and thankful to see these places.

BC– How have you found French Rugby? How would you rank it against Southern Hemisphere rugby?

LL – I’m very impressed with the Pro D 2. I didn’t think the level was going to be so high. There is a lot of talent in France. The level of professionalism just isn’t there here as in South Africa. A lot of players haven’t got to that mindset yet.

BC– Away games in France have widely been rumored to be not as important. As teams often send under strength teams. Is this the case?

LL – Yes normally they do send a ‘weaker’ team to play away, but its very important to rest the players as it is a very long season over here.

BC– Your friend Rory Kockott may well be a French Test player in a couple of months. Would you one day hope to use the residency rule to play Test Rugby?

LL – Yes he is doing very, very well over here. I’m very happy for him. If it happens and if it’s what God wants for me I would be grateful but it’s not a thing I am constantly thinking or dreaming about. I’m just enjoying rugby and life at the moment and working hard to find my feet.

BC– Is Super Rugby watched in Europe? How big is its fan base?

LL – Yes it is. It’s not as big as I thought. Most of the players watch the Top 14. Which is the top French league. There are a lot of games and good quality.

BC– Do you have any plans in place after rugby? A return to South Africa?

LL – I’m still studying. I would like go into sports conditioning after rugby but I’m still doing my BCom Accounting as well.

BC– Thanks Louis, all the best for the rest of the season.

LL – Thank you very much. Appreciate all the support. God bless.


  • Seems like a real gentleman.

  • Comment 1, posted at 20.03.14 11:03:19 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @Big Fish (Comment 1) : he is a top guy. Louis is one of those rare people who is a Christian first and foremost… lives and breathes his faith and everything else is secondary. I find that it shapes the way he behaves and treats people.

  • Comment 2, posted at 20.03.14 11:26:32 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Nice one.

  • Comment 3, posted at 20.03.14 11:31:29 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • Good man, i enjoyed his time at the Sharks. Very under valued player. And interesting to see he has stayed at 13 where he finished off here.

  • Comment 4, posted at 20.03.14 11:49:37 by SheldonK Reply

  • Superb interview Benedict! It’s great to read about Louis’ experiences off the rugby field too. Hope you’re planning to do a few more?

    Also like the idea of SW keeping up with ex-Sharks. Hope it gives some players an extra incentive to one day return.

  • Comment 5, posted at 20.03.14 12:37:01 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : which makes it so much more devastating that he wasn’t awarded a Test cap at some point. (not that test rugby is just for nice guys)

    Ever since 2007 when he made the emerging Bok team he should have been drafted into the squad. Definitely the best and most consistent fullback in the last 5 years domestically and yet Nicknacks and co all got gifted caps ahead of him

  • Comment 6, posted at 20.03.14 14:10:41 by pienaar111 Reply

  • Buffled at his non-Test player status. Indeed a brilliant player. Very humble too.

  • Comment 7, posted at 20.03.14 14:48:55 by bchanakira2 Reply
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : need more people like that

  • Comment 8, posted at 20.03.14 15:13:33 by pierre_mackie Reply
  • Nice One!!! Thanks!

  • Comment 9, posted at 20.03.14 21:13:44 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice

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