The three-quarter international center, captain in the absence of Chavancy, evokes the growing place he occupies within the Ile-de-France club, which he joined last season.
The international center Gaël Fickou (27 years old, 63 caps), arrived during last season at Racing 92 and promoted captain in September “To support” the holder of the role Henry Chavancy, believes that he “It’s time (for him) to take responsibility”, before the trip to Toulon on Saturday (9:05 p.m.) on behalf of the 7th day of the Top 14.
Racing 92 is fourth in the standings. Is it rather frustration that predominates?
Gaël Fickou: Not at all. We are sometimes frustrated after the matches but today we are in the first six. We take pleasure in the field even if we always expect better given the workforce we have. We are happy to have won four out of six matches. Few teams have done it so it’s satisfying. The most important thing is to win. It is true that lately, it was not necessarily with the manner but it is necessary to know how to be satisfied. We want to raise our level of play and we have the qualities to do so, but the main thing is to win.
You inherited the captaincy at Racing 92 quite quickly after your arrival in April. Your name circulates among others to be captain of the XV of France in the absence of Charles Ollivon, injured. How do you live it?
It is done over time. Today, I am 27 years old, I have evolved. In Racing, it happened naturally. It’s going really well, they integrated me well and I already knew them all very well. It was done without taking the lead. They offered me the captaincy to support Henry (Chavancy). I took it with pleasure and simplicity because I think it’s time for me to take responsibility and try to help the team. In the France team, we will see how it will go, for the moment we are not there, it is in one or two weeks. I already supported Charles a lot (Ollivon). But there are also other suitors who would be very good in this role too. If they need to, they know they can count on me.
Today captain, it is the image that the team can reflect, it is to show the example, to be the first to fight on the ground.
What is the main quality to be a captain?
You have to think about the whole team, know what the guys are feeling, if they are feeling good … You must not think about yourself. You always have to be in good shape in training, set an example, motivate guys, always be at 200%. It takes a lot of energy. I had lived this role in (category of) young people but it is perhaps because you are then the best player that one calls you captain. Today captain (at the highest level), it is more than that, it is the image that the team can reflect, it is to set an example, to be the first to fight on the field. It’s a very important role, both on and off the pitch. You have to be in touch with all the guys, whatever their mentality, to have good cohesion in the team. Some are hard workers, others are resting on their laurels, there are also young people … You have to know how to make the connection between all that.
Comments collected during a press briefing