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Thursday, March 06, 2014

Brian O'Driscoll on the brink of breaking Wallaby George Gregan's Test cap record

This weekend Ireland face Italy in a Six Nations match that they'd be expected to win. Most of the focus will be on Brian O'Driscoll either way, as he will claim the record for most Test caps ever, as well as play his final Test match in Dublin. 

In Ireland's last match O'Driscoll equalled the record set by Wallaby great George Gregan, so when facing Italy he is set to eclipse it, then play his final match for his country a week later.

Gregan, who played 139 Tests for his country, has said that the record couldn't go to a better player. "He's just a great player, he still wants to contribute to the teams that he plays with," Gregan said.  "So it’s well deserved, he'll go past that and set a new record which is fantastic."

"I got a nice tweet from George Gregan on equaling his record and people have been lovely over the last while. I just want to be able to go out on a high, that's the big thing," he said this week.

O'Driscoll then has a chance to finish on high, as a win in his final match - over France in Paris - could mean a Six Nations championship victory, adding to his long list of accolades.

"There is no individual feeling, there really isn't, there’s always time to reflect afterwards and that’s the time to do it. The team has absolute priority and always has done, there will be no extra emphasis made by anyone this weekend other than giving us a final showdown against France."

BOD's record run at the top may be short-lived however, as there are a few others who might catch up, namely Richie McCaw, who has currently played 124 Tests for New Zealand.

"I'm sure in time it will be broken, yes, there's always scope for guys to break records," O'Driscoll said. "All going well, hopefully I'll get the record this weekend I'm sure it will be broken another time. Lots of guys now are over the 100-cap mark and still playing, and still playing well.

"If guys look after themselves and maintain their fitness for 15 years I think you will see the 150-cap mark broken. I can't see it being a bad thing, someone being consistently good, enough to stay in the competition environment, for 14 or 15 years. So I would definitely say I encourage it."

credit: RTE Rugby

Posted by Rugbydump at 9:00 am | View Comments (12)

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Viewing 12 comments

ST March 06, 2014 7:01 pm

What's going on with his arm on the picture???

Anyway big congrats on the guy

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DrG March 06, 2014 7:12 pm

I'll hold on to my congratulations - there is still time for something to go awry, of course fingers crossed it doesn't.

Ah George Gregan, another one of those sneaky little scrum halves of old, as tenacious as any loose forward and as potentially nasty as any little Jack Russell dog, never afraid to get in the face of those far bigger than them! Never met him but he seems like a good man!

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Mastersa March 06, 2014 9:07 pm

Both legends of the beautiful game

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Eddie-g March 06, 2014 9:20 pm

I agree McCaw will likely hold this record one day, but there's hardly anyone else in the same ballpark. Only 4 players in history have played more than 120 tests, and I would not predict many more will. The chances of being world class for around 15 years, and remaining fit enough over the same period, are extremely thin.

Hats off to BOD, quite legendary achievement.

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DrG March 07, 2014 2:34 am

Have to agree with you there Eddie, the obvious key for all the current greats among greats here is fitness. Take someone like Dan Carter for instance, he is 32 years old, has been playing for the AB's since he was 21 and has 100 caps but think of how he has been plagued with injury in the recent years (and before?) I'm sure had he remained injury free, he too would be looking at getting close to those records. Even McCaw and BOD themselves have missed out on a number of games/caps due to injury.

Dragging up some other names, Johnny Wilkinson, another 'great' plagued by injury.

I don't like to single out players in a way that makes them sound greater than the team they're playing for, but the above bunch of names are definitely the big sorts of names that are often in the limelight for the right reasons and their skills have definitely seen them come to gain a huge amount of caps.

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freiburgRFC March 07, 2014 8:33 pm

Hi guys first time posting here, congrats to my fellow country man BOD, as regards the next to hold this record Sergio Parrisse from Italy is a shoe in 104 caps and he is only 30!! the man is a beast and would walk into any team in the 6N. Many more caps from this man to come(Barring Injury!!)

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DrG March 07, 2014 10:55 pm

Welcome. Yeh Parrisse is another good call, Italy would struggle to find anyone to fill his shoes - Not sure who they'll pick this weekend.

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Phil mc avity March 07, 2014 9:33 pm

BOD you're brilliant and will always be remembered in rugby history.
(If ever you go to Toulon, Toulon would have had my old xbox dream team wilko-giteau-habana-bod-umaga)

George North is only 21 and has always got 30 odd caps maybe even in the 40's.
Even Farrell isn't doing too bad. It's good to see internationnal rugby brining up stars again.
People like BOD, Gregan and Parisse..etc have set a brilliant example.

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perfectthirteen March 07, 2014 10:44 pm

haha thats brilliant what was your dream tean 15 think my dream team would of been
1.Baxter 2.Byrne 3.Hayes
4.O Kelly 5.Jack
6.Burger 7.Mcaw 8.Nyanga
9.Gregan 10.Carter
12.Robinson 13 O Driscoll(C)
11.Williams 15.Latham 14.Habana
Absolutely lethal

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perfectthirteen March 07, 2014 10:44 pm

haha thats brilliant what was your dream tean 15 think my dream team would of been
1.Baxter 2.Byrne 3.Hayes
4.O Kelly 5.Jack
6.Burger 7.Mcaw 8.Nyanga
9.Gregan 10.Carter
12.Robinson 13 O Driscoll(C)
11.Williams 15.Latham 14.Habana
Absolutely lethal

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Phil mc avity March 07, 2014 11:08 pm

Nyanga (plays second row on EA rugby 2006) *
Burger *
Mc caw *
Smith *
Gregan *
Wilko *
Habana *
Giteau (or Henson if I wanted to play all * backs)
Robinson/Umaga *
Carter *

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DrG March 09, 2014 9:33 am

Whats with the *'s ? Confused... Nice team though...

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