|Position||Full Back/Wing |
|Weight||92kg (14st 6lb)|
|Caps||2 Test appearances|
A proud tradition of England internationals with Nigerian roots was maintained when Topsy Ojo scored two tries on his Test debut at Eden Park, Auckland in June 2008. Twenty three years ago, Chris Oti raced on to the international stage with a hat trick of tries against Ireland and he has since been followed by fellow Anglo-Nigerians Victor Ubogu, Steve Ojomoh and Adedayo Adebayo.
Topsy was born in North London to Nigerian parents and spent three years at school in Lagos before the family settled in Sidcup, Kent.
Pace and panache are his assets that were highlighted when he scored a stunning try for London Irish during his man of the match performance in the 2008 Heineken Cup semi-final against Toulouse at Twickenham, beating Jean-Baptiste Elissalde and Cédric Heymans with a searing run. He was educated at Dartford Grammar School and became a member of the of 2005-06 England Under 21s’ Grand Slam squad, having joined the Irish in July 2003.
That is one of six levels at which he has played for his country – the others include Under 18s, 19s, Young England Sevens and Saxons. While at school, he had combined rugby and athletics with considerable success, appearing for Kent Schools and Under 18s, London & South East Under 16s and 18s before moving on to national honours.
A whistle-stop trip to South Africa pointed the way to his full Test caps. He was called up as emergency cover for the second Test against the Springboks at Pretoria in 2007 but was not required.
Tottenham born, he made his senior debut for London Irish against Bristol in September 2005 and has impressed the Exiles’ attack coach and former England player Mike Catt, who said: “Topsy knows where the try-line is and he is a fantastic runner. He has been exceptional for us and progressed every time he has played. He is a hard grafter and is like a sponge for information and advice.”
In May this year, Topsy was named as the London Irish Player of the Season. He scored a dozen tries, including ten in the Premiership that made him the joint second highest touchdown maker alongside Chris Ashton of Northampton Saints. Soon afterwards, he started the opening Churchill match in which the Saxons beat the USA 87-8 at Franklin’s Gardens.
2008 NZ (1,2)