In a dream week for Dean Mumm, the Wallabies’ comeback kid has welcomed a baby boy into the world – on the same day he was introduced as Australia’s newest captain.
On Friday, the 31-year-old was to be unveiled to the media as the 84th captain of the Wallabies.
Instead, he was by the side of his wife Sarah in a London hospital as she gave birth to the couple’s first child, a boy.
Mumm had made the two-and-a-half hour dash to London from the Wallabies training base in Bath on Friday night after being told it was ‘go time’ – despite, at 34 weeks, the birth being premature.
“I think he’d be a very happy man right now somewhere I’d imagine,” coach Michael Cheika said.
“It’s very good news for him.”
It caps a remarkable week for Mumm, who will lead Australia out at Villa Park against Uruguay on Sunday for the Wallabies’ second World Cup match.
It’s hard to imagine, considering at the start of the year he was still playing with English side Exeter.
On a punt, and with a World Cup dream inspiring him, Mumm made the tough call to return home to Australia and join the Waratahs on a one-year contract.
While wife Sarah stayed in England, and continued her pregnancy, Mumm quietly set about reclaiming his spot in the Wallabies squad and was ultimately rewarded with a spot in Cheika’s 31-man World Cup squad.
Mumm is expected to reunite with his teammates on Saturday – either in Bath for the captain’s run, or meeting them directly in Birmingham later in the afternoon.
Cheika predicted he might show up with heavy eyelids.
“He’s going to start learning about the benefits of no sleep either isn’t he?” Cheika said.
“So he’ll be playing off the back of no sleep, probably, but I haven’t even had the chance to talk to him yet so I’m not really keen to talk about it on the press stage.
“I’d rather talk to the player first, and congratulate him, but I’m sure he’s got a lot of really good feelings at the moment having been in that situation myself.
“And I’m sure that good feeling will flow through for the rest of his life; but in the short term, obviously in this moment here, and it will be very good for him.”