Leinster pay tribute to talisman O'Driscoll
June 1, 2014
Brian O'Driscoll is held aloft by his Leinster team-mates after Saturday's PRO12 victory © Getty Images
Leinster team-mates and coaches have paid tribute to Brian O'Driscoll, whose glittering 15-year career came to an end after Saturday's RaboDirect PRO12 final.
O'Driscoll, whose fairytale ending was disrupted when he was forced off with a calf injury after just eight minutes, watched from the stands as Leinster overcame Glasgow Warriors 34-12 at the RDS Arena to take their fourth PRO12 crown, becoming the first team to defend the title.
O'Driscoll lifted the trophy with fellow retiree Leo Cullen, and Leinster head coach Matt O'Connor said his players were determined to win for their talisman: "Brian O'Driscoll has been immense. They don't make them like that anymore and we are just privileged to have him in the environment.
"It's not all about one guy but there's no doubt everyone here wanted to make sure he, Leo and the other guys who are leaving us went out in the right way. We have worked really hard all year. They deserve it because they worked really hard throughout the season.
"It was a tough battle. We knew that it would be and we needed to put our best performance to beat Glasgow and it is no disgrace to lose to our team."
Leinster captain Jamie Heaslip hailed O'Driscoll's commitment to the province: "It was great for us to be able to send off a guy who has given so much to Leinster rugby and to Irish rugby with a trophy.
"He has been unbelievable to play alongside. We knew it would not be easy and, to be fair to Glasgow, I don't think the score reflected the way the two sides played, but we are over the moon to finish like that."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Jose Mourinho has praised his Chelsea squad after beating Tottenham to lift the League Cup, reserving special praise for those who did not feature in Sunday's Wembley final
Captain John Terry believes Chelsea's "massive" League Cup final win over Tottenham could be the start of something special for the club
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says Mercedes cannot afford to be arrogant about its perceived advantage from the winter at the Australian Grand Prix
England's Andy Sullivan claimed his second European Tour title in Johannesburg in the space of eight weeks on Sunday, carding a closing 66 to win the Joburg Open
Sebastian Vettel believes there will be a close fight for third on the grid at the first race in Australia but reckons Mercedes has the front row of the grid secure already
Ireland coach Joe Schmidt won the tactical battle and set his team on course for a shot at the Grand Slam. Tom Hamilton reports from Dublin
With the World Cup only a few months away, the last thing France needed was doubts over the future of their coach, writes Huw Richards
They came to Murrayfield looking to put down a marker, but Scotland were sent home with their tails between their legs, writes Tristan Barclay
In the latest edition of ESPN's Week in Words, Olivier Giroud gets emotional, Dimitar Berbatov is a bit smug, Arsene Wenger is hurting and Rory McIlroy is "p***** off"
ESPN sat down with Toro Rosso rookie Carlos Sainz in Barcelona to talk his rookie year, escaping his famous father's shadow and the step up to the big league in 2015
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says Daniel Sturridge's fitness must be managed properly so that the striker "doesn't break"
Ander Herrera wishes he could play every game for Manchester United but manager Louis van Gaal's "philosophy" will ultimately restrict his match time
Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea has dismissed speculation he has fallen out with manager Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal admits Manchester United have fallen behind Chelsea and Manchester City this season because they have lacked a prolific goalscorer
Referee Roger East has told the body responsible for officiating standards in English football it was not a case of mistaken identity when he sent off Sunderland's Wes Brown at Manchester United
The PGA Tour swings into Los Angeles for the Northern Trust Open and the season steps up a gear with some notable names coming out of winter hibernation
An honest England side have been searching for the heir to Jason Robinson for nearly a decade. Step forward Jonathan Joseph, writes Simon Barnes
We rewind to 2003 when Real Madrid brought a park attitude to their Champions League clash with Manchester United and played out a 4-3 thriller
Chris Eubank Jr tells Inside Boxing of his hopes of a rematch with Billy Joe Saunders - and a dream showdown with the formidable Gennady Golovkin
Piers Morgan has declared himself "hurt" over former Arsenal goalkeeper Bob Wilson's claims that he is not an authentic fan of the club