Paul O’Connell was named the Six Nations player of the tournament recently, receiving over 26% of the public vote. This cements his place as one of the very best players in the game right now, and although we posted about him recently, this video is better.
In Greek Mythology, when Paris of Troy kidnapped Queen Helen, kings from across Greece assembled to bring their armies together to retrieve her and breach a city that had never before been breached.
Among these kings was Odysseus, cunning and clever and Achilles, a true warrior feared on the battlefield for his bravery and strength. Two captains who possessed two very different abilities without which the Greeks could not have won the battle of Troy.
Now, picture a different army, a Green army, lead by two equally famous and inspirational leaders vital to their success. Brian O’Driscoll cunning and clever and Paul O’Connell feared on the battlefield for his bravery and strength.
In 2009 and 2014 they tasted victory on the frontline together but many thought that without the quick mind of their Odysseus, Ireland would struggle in the 2015 six nations.
Such is the testament to the influence of O’Connell, unfazed by O’Driscoll’s retirement he lead his team to their first back to back titles in over 30 years, as well as reaching personal milestones on the way.
Ireland now sit third in the world rankings and are looking like an army that few will want to fight as the world goes to war this September.
Regardless of Ireland’s success at this World Cup, one thing is guaranteed; In thousands of years people will talk about the fearless warrior of Irish mythology. Paul O’Connell, one of the greatest soldiers the country has ever seen.
The RTE video below was made to commemorate his 100 caps for Ireland
credit: rte rugby