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Last Updated: Sunday, 8 July 2007, 07:54 GMT 08:54 UK
Rugby conversion for rocker Rod
Rod Stewart
Rod Stewart played a whole new ball game for his Cardiff crowd
Soccer-loving rock superstar Rod Stewart was asked to switch sports for the day for a performance at the home of Welsh rugby.

The 62-year-old singer abandoned his familiar routine of kicking footballs into the crowd at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on Saturday night.

Instead, he was persuaded to punt rugby balls in honour of the Welsh crowd.

Stadium manager Gerry Toms said rugby balls were kept handy for Stewart's first stage appearance at the venue.

Stewart has never hidden his love of football during a long career.

He has been to the stadium once before - but to watch an FA Cup final rather than to perform.

Rod Stewart at the Tennant's Scottish Cup final at Hampden Park, Glasgow, in May 2007
I'm not retiring, but I won't be doing any tours that long and, to be honest, I can't imagine me doing these big stadiums in Britain anymore
Rod Stewart

The singer, who needed 10 stitches after injuring his leg on stage in Manchester in June, has vowed to downsize his concerts after recently finishing a "punishing" five-month American tour.

As such, his Millennium Stadium gig, and two other dates at the Ricoh Stadium in Coventry, could be the last of their kind, he said before the Cardiff show.

"I'm not retiring, but I won't be doing any tours that long and, to be honest, I can't imagine me doing these big stadiums in Britain anymore," said Stewart, who in June married his third wife, model Penny Lancaster.

"I've done them and I've done the other arenas, next time round I'd like to do it in a totally different way."

Stewart, who is best known for hits such as Maggie May and Sailing, also paid homage to Wales with backing from a Welsh choir and a version of Swansea singer Bonnie Tyler's It's a Heartache.

"I've only been there (the Millennium Stadium) once before to see the cup final between Arsenal and Southampton, where I was backing my old mate Gordon Strachan at Southampton, but I've never thought or dreamt about playing there," he said.




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