Ex-France international rugby player has Parkinson’s disease

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Author: Geoffrey ChangPublished: 23 December 2015

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Ex-France international rugby player Marc Dal Maso has revealed he has Parkinson’s disease.

In his career, the 48-year-old played 33 times for France as a hooker between 1988 and 2000 and appeared in the 1999 World Cup as well as winning the Five Nations Grand Slam in 1997 and 1998. He was a coach for Japan at this year’s World Cup when the Asian team surprised everyone by beating South Africa.

Dal Maso says he decided to go public because of negative rumours that were spreading.

He told the Midi-Olympique rugby daily: “There were rumours doing the rounds so rather than listen to people say stupid things it was better that they know. Let’s just say there are sports which help illnesses like this and rugby is one of them.”

He added that the illness had been detected in 2012 but had probably started years before then.

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