What does victory mean for a professional athlete? The handsome heartthrob talks about his most victorious moments.


You are a former rugby player, victory and defeat had been part of your personal life in a daily basis. What victory means to you?

As you move through different stages in life, the idea of victory and defeat changes over time. When I was much younger and I was playing professional sports, the only thing that mattered was winning, but now I understand that victory comes in so many different forms. It doesn’t necessarily mean I have to be dominant over someone or defeat someone else. I now run marathons for charity and honestly I am never going to win a marathon. However I feel so much more victorious when I finish a marathon and complete the race with children smiling because they are running with me, than I ever did when I won games in sports. We are also victorious every day. I feel victorious when I wake up in the morning, I log on to my computer and I start studying with my graduate school at university, because this is something that I have chosen to do, I chose to become better and I chose to learn. I think, once you can see all of that, you’ll have larger wins and you can really take them in and live them deeply.


Can you choose three Victory moments of your life and tell us why they had been important for you?

The way I see victory, the way I live victory, the way I reflected on victory has changed but for sure becoming a professional athlete was a victorious moment for me. I have worked very hard as a young person to get to the places I got to, so stepping into the professional platform was a super important part of my life. To be honest, I know it sounds corny but one of the most victorious moment of my life was doing Invictus. I come from a vastly different profession and working with Paco Rabanne has been fascinating for me. I have the chance to see such a different side of the professional life: working with hundreds of people on sets of tv commercials and doing some of the fantastic stuff we are doing with charity around the world. It really has been an amazing journey for me, something that I am very proud of and very grateful for. Also stepping out of a relationship to a place where it was uncertain where I was going, felt like a very victorious moment. It’s like getting out of a comfort zone, this is what scares us and this is where fear or anxiety comes in.


Can you describe the feeling of a victory?

It’s the result of all the hard work, the sacrifices and the challenges along the way. In your mind, you know all of the steps you have taken to get to the victory, to reach the pinnacle or what victory means to you. It could be as easy as waking up in the morning or making your bed, playing for your country in football, or running the New York marathon. It’s a combination of everything that happened in your life to the point where you think: “I did it, I am here.”


Do you have a Victory role model? If so, who is it?

As a young person, I was so involved and deeply into sports that most of the victorious people I looked up to were sports people. Kelly slater for instance or Stephanie Gilmore, who is another Australian surfer. I am fascinated by her expertise and her ability to transcend multiple years and be so successful. But I am also amazed by her desire to fight for women’s rights and equality in surfing and in sport more broadly. As I grew older, Martin Luther King became an idea of someone who is victorious, although we are still going through struggles and social inequality, especially considering race. But what he was able to do in such a short period of time was so inspiring, it gives me the sense of victory in a different way. I want to evoke social change myself with the things that I support and the social advocacy that I do.


Defeat is part of the game too, what have you learned from losing?

You learn so much about yourself when you lose! In sport, I can guarantee if you lose a game on a Saturday, on a Monday, at training you have to watch your performance and see what you did wrong. We are constantly challenged on achieving perfection through defeat but also through victory, because even if we win, we can still be making mistakes. This is why I put so much emphasis on the small things and understanding on how to become better. Defeat is not failing, if you experience defeat it’s because you had the willingness to put yourself out in an environment where defeat was a possibility, that’s fantastic, that is what living is all about.


You are the co-Founder of ‘Athletes for Life’, a charity focused on helping retired athletes in their professional transition. Can you tell us more about this project?

So, with Athletes For Life, we concentrate on athletic identity transformations: helping athletes to see themselves as more than just athletes. We need to create this understanding of who people are beyond their athletic career, which starts early and can finish early. At twenty-one, twenty-two, you are out there on your own, you have to recreate yourself again. We also believe that challenging athletes to access to vulnerability is really beneficial and empowering to other people. I do think if you can see a person at the top of their game then, professing their own challenges; it can empower society more broadly. Maybe we can create more empathy and more understanding of each other.


You are an advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and equality and denounced publicly in your social account situations of discrimination and inequality. Can you tell us how it started?

I don’t remember a specific moment where I decided to support the LGBTQ+ community, but something inside of me made me understand that I should. I did some gay magazines and I was severely ostracized for that in sports. I was called all the names the LGBTQ+ community is exposed to. I felt like I had to stand up and say something even though I knew I was going to be marginalized. It was never for accolades, I felt it was the right thing to do. Now with social media, it’s true that I came to the party a bit late, but the messages that I receive regularly about how it makes the LGBTQ+ community feel to have an ally like myself make me happy.


What is your relationship with perfume? What are the occasions you wear perfume? Where do you apply it?

I do wear perfume all the time, I am lucky enough to have a very good selection of perfumes thanks to Paco Rabanne! I actually always did love perfume when I was a kid. My mom always wore perfume and my grandmother, too. The earliest memories as a child are associated to it. I was one of those guys who was stealing his dad’s perfume. Applying perfume it’s like a reward, we work hard and we want to smell nice, for ourselves but also for other people. Voila! Now that I work in the industry, I understand more the different notes and what it takes to make a perfume. When I put it on, I think about the amount of time and work dedicated to it. It’s inspiring.


The new Invictus Victory is the only eau de parfum extreme of the Invictus family. What are your thoughts about the new fragrance?

I love the mix of freshness and intensity. It reveals sensuality but also has a strong energy. It smells really good.


Do you have a favorite from the whole range?

I don’t have a favorite, all the fragrances can be used at different times. Throughout the range, there are subtle different things, always playing on the juxtaposition of freshness and sensuality. I love the versality of the fragrances, it’s great for males. If I see Invictus Legend as a fragrance that I might wear on a first date, someone else might see it as an everyday fragrance, that is so great, it reveals who you are. The one you chose to wear can really point your own individuality.