Christophe Dominici during the 2007 World Cup in France.
MARTIN BUREAU / AFP
The former legend of the XV of France Christophe Dominici committed suicide on Tuesday in the Paris region, at 48 years old.
Throughout his life, the hero of Twickenham had suffered from psychological frailties.
His friends regret not having done more to help him.
There are glances at the archives that hurt more than reality.
The last time we spoke to Christophe Dominici, it was to comment on another drama in our personal mythology of the great history of rugby.
The death of Jonah Lomu, a few days after the attacks of 2015. “Domi”, the tormentor of the New Zealand giant for eternity, had this sentence so cruel for what it means today: “He had a lot of modesty, he suffered all alone ”.
Christophe Dominici also suffered in silence, very early in his life, until ending his days on that sad Tuesday in November at the Parc de Saint-Cloud, so close as the crow flies to the lawns that saw him succeed in his best breakthroughs with the Blues and Stade Français.
The original explosion dates back to adolescence.
Pascale, the adored big sister, disappears in a car accident when he is 14 years old.
Small in stature but a titan on the field, Christophe Dominici we will never forget you.
Rest In Peace dear friend.
- All Blacks (@AllBlacks) November 24, 2020
Mourning to wear before adolescence
“When he died, I went into self-defense.
I was angry with the whole world, he recalls in an old article in Liberation
I wanted to prove to my parents that I was still there.
But I did not know what to destroy.
Bad company, fights that go wrong and car thefts that often send him to the police station.
Rugby saves him the first time, before making him dive again.
A nervous breakdown that follows his media explosion after the World Cup 99. 25 days without sleep after the departure of his wife, the trigger.
It goes up the slope thanks to kinesiology, a mixture of Chinese medicine and neuropsychology, but its fragility is now known to all.
Christophe Dominici with Max Guazzini on the lawn of the Parc des Princes, in 2005. - Bertrand GUAY / AFP
"It was a guy a little crazy, in excess, but at the same time very warm, who walked on the affective", explains Bernat-Salles, the friend of Twickenham, as stunned as us by the news.
“We weren't in too much contact, but we saw each other once a year for an old-school game or a Blues game, and we had a good binge together.
I knew he had problems, but not that much ”.
The former BO winger spontaneously evokes the resumption of Béziers, "a project that was close to his heart".
This is the last public appearance of the little peroxide blonde who has enchanted a few of our Six Nations afternoons.
Dominici had promised mountains and wonders, renowned players, to make Béziers a great one in Europe, before being knocked out by the former Toulouse president René Bouscatel.
"People who drooled over him will say he was fantastic"
Bad tongues then give it to their heart's content, and to be fair, the noises that come back to our ears will not do the memory of the boy honor, like this incomprehensible story of the theft of panama in a shop in Sanary-sur- Sea revealed by the
Richard Dourthe, another lively flayed of French rugby, is angry with sadness: “It's hard, that's all.
There is nothing to say, just to suffer.
So obviously, we're going to hear all these people who criticized him praising him, "he was great, thing, thing".
And that makes me crazy.
The people who drooled over him, the history of Béziers, his way of being, and there they are going to say that he is fantastic.
They used to say "he's a branque, an asshole", but now Domi is no longer there.
This is what is hard ”.
Longtime friends try to understand.
Understand how they did not see the distress of a man who rather succeeded in his aftermath of rugby, between his viticulture company Monte Bacco (25 employees and 12 million euros in turnover in 2019) and his stable of horses.
On RMC, Benazzi is returned in his 22 when he evokes a failing support from the Federation at the time of his depression, which he had yet overcome to become a decisive player at the end of his career.
Olivier Brouzet, former teammate for the Blues and the Stade Français, feels guilty in spite of himself.
“What we said to each other with my friends is that unfortunately we weren't close enough and today we blame ourselves because we could perhaps have felt things better.
This is what we just said with Romain Magellan [another stadist, editor's note] five minutes ago, we should have called him, stay in touch more because we could have suspected this sad end.
It is something complicated.
Christophe was someone who undertook a lot, he was a jack of all trades, and obviously when you undertake a lot, you sometimes have disappointments.
I do not know if this is the reason why Christophe decided to leave but… ”.
The failure of the takeover of Béziers had stuck in his throat
The faithful among the faithful of the Stade Français fail to articulate a word, paralyzed by sorrow.
Max Guazzini manages to do it as best he can on RMC: “I'm upset, I can't speak, it's so violent.
He gave the impression of being very sure of himself but Christophe was very fragile.
I do not know what is the impact of the failure of the recovery of the Béziers club on his gesture.
But it's terrible for his wife, his daughters.
It is absolutely violent ”.
It is finally Olivier Brouzet who has the right words, when hanging up: “Christophe was a tightrope walker, he was elusive and here we are, perhaps until the end we did not know how to grasp him well.
It's a shame, death tears it away from us and we are upset ”.
Christophe Dominici, hero of the XV of France, died at the age of 48
Death of Christophe Dominici: "A guy a little crazy but so warm" ... His former teammates pay tribute to him
XV of France