Pat Lam confirms courageous Bundee Aki's commitment to the Connacht cause 2 years ago

Pat Lam confirms courageous Bundee Aki's commitment to the Connacht cause

"Feeling pissed."

When Bundee Aki tweeted those two words upon hearing Pat Lam was Bristol-bound at at the end of the season, Connacht fans may have been concerned their influential centre was losing faith.

Not a chance. First he cleared up that frustrated tweet: "Certainly I think I over-reacted. Pat has had a big influence on all of the boys, and especially myself, he has really improved my game. You have got to move on in rugby. People come and go and you have to enjoy every partnership you have and every professional you play with."

Then he put in a towering performance against Wasps as the English giants were dramatically beaten in Galway.

European Rugby Champions Round 4, Sportsground, Galway 17/12/2016 Connacht vs Wasps Connacht's Bundee Aki Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

And then he got injured.

However on Thursday Pat Lam revealed just how determined Aki was to avoid the ankle surgery that will keep him out until mid-February.

Despite the potential for long-term damage and the prospect of serious agony, Aki was ready to play on.

In fact, it took some serious persuasion from Lam to convince the reigning PRO12 player of the season to go under the knife.

"It was once the feedback came back from the surgeons. They got the second opinion, but it’s been ongoing for Bundee. He just gets on with it. He could press on, but as soon as they came back that we run the risk of further damage, we all made the decision to get in there and get it done now," Lam told reporters.

“We sat down and went through all the facts with him and explained it to them. He felt he didn’t want to let the team down, but we said: ‘Mate, you need to get it sorted, get in there and get it done'."

Further proof the big man is a good bugger.