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England v Ireland
Graham Rowntree warns England of O'Driscoll threat
ESPN Staff
February 21, 2014
Graham Rowntree labels Brian O'Driscoll as an 'icon' © Getty Images
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England forwards coach Graham Rowntree says that "icon" Brian O'Driscoll will be desperate to mark his final appearance against the English with a win on Saturday.

Rowntree has warned his side of the Irishman's influence ahead of the Twickenham fixture, England's first home game of this year's Six Nations.

"Beating us will mean everything to him. What a player ... he's an icon," Rowntree said. "He's a thoroughly professional player and I really enjoyed working with him. As a man he's exceptional."

Rowntree goes on to note that the less experienced members of Stuart Lancaster's squad are already aware of O'Driscoll, set to retire from international rugby this summer.

"You hear the way Owen Farrell, Luther Burrell and Billy Vunipola speak about him, you can tell the respect they have for him," he added.

Saturday will see O'Driscoll equal the 139-cap record currently held by ex-Australia scrum-half George Gregan, a number he will likely go on to break against Italy in a fortnight's time.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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