The 5-minute Interview: Martin Johnson, Former England rugby captain

'To play in three World Cups and win the last is special'
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The Independent Online

Martin Johnson, 37, led the 2003 World Cup-winning winning team. He retired from international rugby in January 2004 but played for Leicester until 2005.

If I weren't talking to you right now I'd be...

Ideally at home playing with my four-and-a-half-year-old daughter.

I wish people would take more notice of...

Driving. People being rubbish drivers and people not staying in their lanes at roundabouts.

The most surprising thing that happened to me was...

I'm still surprised by what's happened in my sporting career – having played in a team with world champions. When I started playing rugby, there wasn't a World Cup tournament. It wasn't professional, it was an amateur game. To play in three world cups and to win the last one – it still does surprise me to think about it and it always will.

A common misperception of me is...

When people see you play and they see you out there on the field, it's quite fierce and intense, and they think you're like that off the field. It's not like that.

I am not a politician but...

People respect honesty. I'd rather hear the bad news straight than have people spin it to you.

I'm good at...

It's pretty frightening if you don't know how to answer this. I'm good at being a dad for my little girl. She may disagree!

I'm very bad at...

Being patient.

You know me as a sportsman but in another life I might have been ...

Chancellor of the Exchequer.

In moments of weakness I...

I probably eat the wrong things. I like eating food late at night, which is bad.

The ideal night out is...

Dinner with good friends and good company.

The best age to be is...

I think 30 is a good age to be. You've got a bit of experience and your body hasn't fallen to pieces. You can still do everything you could do physically in your 20s.

In a nutshell, my philosophy is this:

Don't have a philosophy on life. Go with your guts and things fall into place.

Mirella Christou

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