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Usain Bolt meeting with Ireland rugby squad gives them boost ahead of campaign

Ireland's Jamie Heaslip posted this photo to Instagram of Usain Bolt posing with the Ireland rugby squad
Staff Reporter

THE world's fastest man Usain Bolt had a surprise meeting with Ireland's ruby team ahead of their World Cup campaign.

The six-time gold medallist had dinner with the Irish squad in London before they lost to England in a friendly last week.

Ireland play their first World Cup match against Canada in Cardiff on Saturday.

Irish hooker Rory Best, from Poyntzpass, said the meeting had been "unbelievable" and gave the Ireland team the boost they needed ahead of the campaign.

The 33-year-old said Bolt had explained how he turned around his season by beating Justin Gatlin in both individual sprints at the World Championships in Beijing.

"It was great just to get his thoughts on things," Best said.

"The big thing, from our point of view, was that he says when he goes into championships and he feels good, he knows he's going to perform.

"It's not necessarily about how events leading into it have gone. It is about how he's feeling himself."

Ireland are hoping for a successful world cup campaign, following two recent back-to-back defeats by Wales and England.

"From our point of view, we're feeling pretty good at the minute. But, obviously, the results over the last two games haven't gone the way we wanted," Best said.

"He has a lot of self-belief. He knows when he prepares well and is ready, he can perform."

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