Foie gras fan Lam 'starting to click' at Bordeaux-Begles

Paris (AFP) –


Former New Zealand sevens international Ben Lam said he has found his feet at Bordeaux-Begles, aided by a growing taste for the signature French food speciality of foie gras.

Lam, 29, joined the French club in September after 16 World Series tournaments with New Zealand 7s and 33 tries in 56 Super Rugby matches for the Blues and the Hurricanes.

The winger has scored three times in five matches but had to wait until his eighth appearance for his maiden effort.

"It took a bit of a while to settle in," Lam told AFP this week.

"It's always hard to adjust to a new style of play, new coach, new players. For a while I got stuck in some middle periods of the game and boys would be under pressure and start speaking French and I'd lose a few things in translation.

"I think it's starting to click. I learn how the other guys play, I adjust off them, it's starting to go well," he added.

Lam's integration has been helped by a dinner club organised by French players for some of the foreigners in the squad, including Tonga prop Ben Tameifuna and Argentina lock Guido Petti.

"We started it as a way for the French players to show us around the city. We would have dinner at different restaurants around the city but since lockdown hit we've been having dinner once a week at different people's houses so we try and invite guests from the team," Lam said.

"My favourite thing here is the foie gras. I almost ate a whole packet. Surprisingly it was really good."

- 'Excited' by Jalibert -

The nephew of former Samoa captain Pat Lam features in a Bordeaux side alongside young France backs in centre Yoram Moefana, who has been ruled out for up to three months with an ankle injury, and fly-half Matthieu Jalibert.

Jalibert, 22, is likely to start for les Bleus in the Six Nations with Romain Ntamack sidelined with a broken jaw suffered in Toulouse's win over Lam's outfit last weekend.

"He's good because he has an attacking mindset. For us he's always wanting to play, it's exciting for me. He's always looking around," Lam said ahead of this weekend's home clash with Toulon.

"His style is really similar to how they play back home. He's still young as well, he's still learning."

Fixtures (all times GMT)


Bordeaux-Begles v Toulon (1415), Montpellier v Toulouse (1630), Agen v La Rochelle, Bayonne v Pau (both 1700), Lyon v Castres (1715)


Stade Francais v Brive (1700), Clermont v Racing 92 (2005)