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Monday, March 10, 2014

Ireland in pole position after O'Driscoll farewell thrashing of Italy

Ireland scored seven tries as Dublin bid farewell to Brian O'Driscoll in what was his final Test at home. His 140th cap now makes him the most capped Test player of all time, adding to the sense of occasion for Ireland fans as their team beat Italy 46-7.

It was all about O'Driscoll, and he didn't disappoint as the most capped individual played a big part in a number of Ireland tries. Some of his sublime handling contributed to first half tries for Andrew Trimble and Jonny Sexton, then he did it again in the second, resulting in another try for Sexton.

He went off to a rousing standing ovation with twenty minutes to go, having helped to get his side into a position whereby a win over France in Paris will all but secure a Championship winning send off for the 35-year-old Ireland rugby legend.

"I feel humbled by the reaction today. It seems a bit of of a joke that you get get man of the match for 60 minutes, but I've loved my time playing in this jersey. It had to come to an end at some stage and I'm glad I'm able to go out at home with a big win," O'Driscoll said.

Cian Healy, Sean Cronin, Fergus McFadden and Jack McGrath all crossed for tries too, despite Italy looking good at one stage, and having to make a record breaking 208 tackles on the day.

Ireland, England and France are all level on points at the top of the Six Nations table, but Ireland's superior points difference could prove the difference going into the final weekend.

They face France in Paris, while England take on Italy in Rome. More Six Nations to follow soon.

Posted at 8:41 am | 17 comments

Posted in Six Nations 2014

Viewing 17 comments

Hanji March 10, 2014 1:33 pm

Nice that he got to go out the way everyone over here definitely wanted him too. Drico along with guys like Wilkinson and Shane Williams did wonders for Northern Hemisphere rugby and I feel for anyone who has to wear that jersey for us, the weight of expectation will be tremendous.

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Ronan March 10, 2014 4:05 pm

thanks bod.
living legend.
TRISKAIDEKAPHOBIA :)

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stroudos March 11, 2014 10:28 am

TRISKAIDEKAPHOBIA = Nice! Not as snappy a nickname as BOD but a very accurate one all the same.

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Full Back March 13, 2014 10:28 am

thank god for google....

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DanKnapp March 10, 2014 10:12 pm

The man is a class act on and off the pitch. To be that good, for that long, is outstanding.

Although I would clearly love England to win the 6N, I would be very happy to see Ireland take the win for BOD's sake. They deserve it. I would also like to see him bow out of the international stage with a trophy.

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Full Back March 11, 2014 2:01 pm

Absolutely! Great to see how much respect he's earned from opposition fans, have to love Rugby for that too!
If we beat France I think we deserve it despite losing to England in that very even contest.
England have a young squad who have all the potential of producing another "golden generation"...they'll get their chance again.

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DanKnapp March 12, 2014 1:41 pm

Absolutely, Ireland deserve to win. The points don't lie. It all depends on the unpredictable, unpredictable French...

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Full Back March 13, 2014 10:25 am

would be just like them to pull out their "game of the tournament" right at the end!
Do you reckon ye'll manage Italy in Rome? :)

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DanKnapp March 13, 2014 9:52 pm

I think we'll beat Italy, but not by enough points to catch you guys.

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themull March 11, 2014 9:44 pm

How is there not more talk about that offload for the third try he set up..That is perhaps the best offload I've ever seen, certainly the best of recent times! absolutely amazing....

Really good to see him play so well as he ends his career..Almost makes me wanna see him keep going to the world cup, but he's taken too much damage over the years and will only cause something long term if he keeps on playing at this level..

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Canadian content March 13, 2014 3:43 am

No other centre does what BOD has done in the last few years. His slight of hand is unmatched at 13, I daresay anywhere outside of sevens. Sure SbW has the backhand offload, but he couldn't have pulled off those other passes.

The more I think about it... The lions series was not built on the backs if wales but more so on the combo of the welsh core aided greatly by the key players from other nations, namely sexton, and Murray, SOB and corbs in the 3rd match.

Wales have no 9 or 10 and are getting killed at scrum time. They can bash but do little else. They are no threat at the next rwc. Sorry I know it's history but I will never forgive gatland for the great disservice he did to one of the greatest lions ever (4 tours! One captaincy!). The score line would have been the same or higher.

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Reality March 13, 2014 8:44 am

I have to agree but the only change I'd make is to specify that the Lions victory was also built on the fact that it was the poorest Australian team in recent memory. Regarding the Welsh component of it, there were some standout players like North and Halfpenney but aside from them the key players were exactly the players you mentioned, although I'd add Paul O'Connell to that list who ended up being the unofficial leader of the tour.

Regarding Wales as a whole, in spite of how since 2008 they've declared themselves to be a world-class team capable of beating the best, the only stage where they've shone is the Six Nations where Ireland, France and England have been in disarray for the last number of years. Whenever they play a SANZAR team (or a decent Six Nations team) they always, always lose. I wish they'd just have a bit of realism because it makes them sound so arrogant when they say they're up there with the very best. Bish-bash rugby works against teams with no creativity but not against the really good ones.

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Canadian content March 13, 2014 2:11 pm

Completely agree, north and halfpenny were outstanding, as was alyn wyn jones and the wallabies were terrible, JOC in particular at 10.

One of my biggest laughs was when Shaun Edwards said they had a plan for nz in the rwc final. They haven't beaten them in like 50 years but were gonna win that game? Lmao

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DrG March 14, 2014 10:07 am

It might sound harsh, but when BOD leaves the green jersey, he just packs up and says, 'now is the time.' The build up to him leaving has been great but imo has not overshadowed the games themselves. The last think I want to see is another Shane Williams Wales thing, where he had about 100 last games - last game at home, last game away, last game in the 6n, last autumn international, last summer international, last last last game, ok this really IS the last game, ok we'll have a tribute last game now, ok now I'm actually truly finally going now game, just kidding game, ok now I'm done game, peace out game, ciao game...

Don't want to see the entire Ireland team running round with BOD or 13 on the back of their shirts...

I don't mean to take anything away from Williams or BOD, they're both fantastic players and deserve a huge amount of credit for their efforts, but BOD certainly gives me the impression he wants everyone to remain fully focussed on Ireland winning the 6N, and not turn the whole focus on him retiring.

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DrG March 14, 2014 10:08 am

meant to say *I hope he just packs up and..*

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DrG March 14, 2014 10:09 am

bloody hell, wish I could edit that.. think = thing, missing words...bloody hell I'm tired!

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