There’s nothing like Origin, says French terror survivor
THEY travel from far and wide to watch State of Origin games.
Seven months ago Bastien Dintilhac was caught up in the Paris terror attack which claimed the lives of 130 people.
Tonight he is among the 52,000-strong sellout Brisbane crowd to watch his second Origin game as part of his 30th birthday celebrations.
The Frenchman though was still unnerved by the events of November 13 when he was trapped in a room as suicide bombers and shooters terrorised bars and restaurants in city's northern district of Saint-Denis.
"It was very terrifying," said Dintilhac, who toured Australia as a hooker with the French schoolboys in 2004 and played for French Universities at the Student World Cup staged in Brisbane in 2008.
Dintilhac attended his first Origin game at Suncorp Stadium in 2013.
"There's nothing like an Origin game," Dintilhac told Australian Regional Media while catching up with his Aussie friend and well-known Brisbane Broncos Corporate Communications manager Trad McLean, who played for Australian Universities.
"The atmosphere at Suncorp Stadium is something you have to experience. I love coming back to Brisbane, it's such a wonderful city."
A few hours before the big game between Queensland NSW, the bars at both the Caxton Street hotel and the Paddington hotel were filling with maroon drowning out the spattering of blue jumpers.
Queensland leads the series 1-0 after a gritty 6-4 win in Sydney and will be looking to give rookie coach Kevin Walters a debut victory as Mal Meninga's replacement.
The Blues though are under immense pressure to force the series into a tie-breaker in Sydney early next month to avoid the embarrassment of a 10th loss in the past 11 years.