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Louis Rees-Zammit excited by his NFL hopes following transition from rugby

Louis Rees-Zammit says his American Football dream is “alive” after starting out on the NFL’s International Player Pathway (IPP) following his switch from rugby union.

The Gloucester, Wales, and British and Irish Lions wing stunned the world of rugby last month by quitting the sport in an attempt to secure a contract with an NFL team in 2024.

Rees-Zammit has joined the NFL’s intensive 10-week IPP programme in Florida, where he has been training as a wide receiver while also doing some running back drills.

Week 2 ✅⚡️

— Louis Rees-Zammit ⚡️ (@LouisReesZammit) February 6, 2024

“There’s a lot of transferable skills over from rugby,” Rees-Zammit (23) told BBC Wales’ Scrum V programme.

“I’m absolutely loving training. My pursuit to be in the NFL is alive and I’m excited to see what the next 10 weeks holds.

“It’s tough to get your head around it a little bit at the start but, as with everything, you get used to it.

“The vision out of the sides (of the helmet) kind of effects things. But I’m getting used to it now and I’ll see what happens.”

Rees-Zammit says 10 international players have joined the IPP, with a pro day held at the end of the programme to determine whether individuals are good enough to make the NFL grade.

He said: “You basically come here and work the game of football on and off the field, in the classroom and training six days a week.

“Ten weeks of intense training to see if your dream becomes a reality.

“It was the hardest decision of my life (to leave rugby), but it was always something I wanted to do, since a young age, and I thought it was the right time.

“If it works out, I have 10 years to try to play the sport I have loved growing up watching, or I can come back to rugby and