England had winger Daniel Darko Luger when they won the 2003 Rugby World Cup, New Zealand had Anthony Boric in their squad when they won the 2011 Rugby World Cup and now newly crowned Six Nations Cup winners Wales have their own Croatian son in their ranks.
Justin Tipuric, whose grandfather is Croatian, joins a growing list of rugby players with Croatian roots around the world playing at the top-level and winning major titles.
Tipuric has represented Wales at every age-grade and was a big success at U-20 level. The 23-year-old Ospreys flanker, who made his Wales debut in 2011 against Argentina, helped Wales this month to their 4th title in the past nine years when they beat rivals England 30-3 at Millennium Stadium.
Tipuric says that he knows rugby is played in the homeland of his grandfather, but he realised a dream by turning out for his country Wales. ‘My father has gone back to Croatia on occasions, but I’ve always lived in Wales. I know they do play rugby but I’ve never got involved,’ said Tipuric.
Tipuric could not lose last night when Croatia met Wales in a World Cup football qualifier last night in Swansea.