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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Brian O'Driscoll answers the fans' call with one year contract extension

Ireland and Leinster legend Brian O'Driscoll has today announced that he has extended his IRFU contract for another year, which covers both club and country. Against Biarritz recently the fans requested it, and today, they got what they wanted.

The 34-year-old veteran was recently included in the British & Irish Lions squad for the tour of Australia, what will be his fourth Lions tour after first touring Australia as a youngster in 2001.

With his form and fitness, Warren Gatland has put faith in the ability, experience, and leadership value that he will bring to the squad. It's also no doubt a good confidence boost, fully vindicating his decision to continue on for yet another year.

He admitted that it wasn't an easy decision to make, but thanked the fans for all of their support.

"I want to thank the IRFU and Leinster for allowing me the time to think about my future and discuss my options with my family," O'Driscoll said.

"The support my family and the Irish and Leinster fans have shown me over the past few months, and indeed years, has been phenomenal and I am now very much looking forward to one more year playing with Ireland and Leinster."

New Ireland coach Joe Schmidt, who has of course spent so much time with O'Driscoll at Leinster, said he was delighted to have the opportunity to work with the great centre for another year.

"It's great that Brian has agreed to continue playing. He's an inspirational player, not only on the pitch, but also on the training ground," he said.

"He's played well again this season and other players continue to learn from him. I know that every squad of which he is a part will profit from his qualities both as a rugby player and a person."

This weekend O'Driscoll will be looking to help Leinster to an Amlin Challenge Cup title when they face Stade Francais in Dublin. That, and the RaboDirect PRO12 final a week later (if he plays) were expected to be his final games at home, but fans can look forward to another year of BOD magic.

Against Biarritz in the Challenge Cup semifinal he scored a try after a nice break by Sean Cronin, and was then cheered on by the crowd, who spurred on by his acknowledgement, continued their chorus of 'One more year'. Now they will get to enjoy precisely that.

Posted at 12:15 pm | 10 comments

Posted in See it to Believe it

Viewing 10 comments

DanKnapp May 16, 2013 4:36 pm

Glad to see he's got another year left in him. Quality player and quality Lion. Hopefully he'll be playing well enough to make the test XV in Australia.

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Ottawa Rugger May 16, 2013 5:00 pm

It's times like right then, while the fans were chanting, I wish announcers would occasionally shut up. There's an atmosphere to be indulged at games, and we don't need to hear someone talking all the time.

A few years back here in Canada TV announcers went on strike (or something like that) so hockey games were being broadcast completely devoid of commentary. Most people liked it because they heard the crowd, the skates on the ice, the players shouting to one another for a pass, etc. There was even a movement afoot to keep it silent, and not bother bringing the announcers back.

I may have digressed a bit, but what I mean to say is that sometimes I like hearing the game, not just watching it

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flanker2712 May 16, 2013 6:31 pm

To continue the digression... You want to try watching a game in Brazil. If there is a part of the game when the commentators should definitely shut up, it's when the ref is talking to the touch judges or players. Here they seem oblivious to it and just carry on jabbering away. Gets me so annoyed.

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bnations May 16, 2013 8:34 pm

I watched a live stream of the All Blacks - Pumas match in last years Rugby Championship that was sublime precisely because the only audio was from one of the assistant referees's microphones. It was soooo nice to hear what the crowd were doing rather than listening to the announcers blather and fill.

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Canadian content May 17, 2013 1:16 am

God I couldn't agree with you guys more. What a beautiful moment, to hear the faithful acknowledge their favorite son, such a unique moment in time. And BOD's reaction to it, not helping but to smile, a player who was never too cool for school.

I watched the 99 RWC match between Eng and NZ with just the stadium noise on Eurosport whilst I was in Northern Italy. The buzz in the stadium was awesome to hear after Jonah's 50 metre rumble for yet another Eng killing try. It was like I was there.

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Nick May 17, 2013 6:15 am

Did anyone hear the Irish crowd singing The Fields of Athenry v Spain at Euro 2012? the German commentator was silent for 7 minutes straight so that they could be heard and it was amazing!

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Eoghan May 17, 2013 1:01 pm

Ireland were 4-0 down, the players had been shown up to not be the standard so the fans stepped up and flew the colours. It was a truly memorable moment and it made the press all around Europe, as everybody was asking. 'Why are they singing?'

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browner May 20, 2013 1:19 pm

Ans.... 12 pints of guinness !

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browner May 20, 2013 1:16 pm

Hasn't he got a disfigured bicep? ..... trained or injured to get that way?

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themull May 21, 2013 12:05 am

As much as I want the man to play forever, I highly doubt he will make it through another season with much game time..he was out for huge chunks of this season, basically until christmas...

Definitely one of the greatest players of all time and certainly one of irelands greatest ever sportsmen but he's going to be a sore man in his old age given how much he's been through and will likely go through again during this lions tour and next season with club and country...

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