Next LIVE rugby on TV
to be announced
Wed, 31 Jul 2013 14:30:05 +0000
  • Switch Edition
ESPN SCRUM / Six Nations 2014 / News
Six Nations
O'Driscoll: Ireland youngsters must live up to expectations
ESPN Staff
March 7, 2014
Brian O'Driscoll has 139 Test caps in a glittering career © Getty Images

Brian O'Driscoll has called on Ireland's youngsters to live up to the standards set by his generation as he looks to break the world record for Test appearances tomorrow.

O'Driscoll, who will win a record 140th cap against Italy on Saturday, has shrugged off a string of tributes paid to him by coaches and fellow players. Instead, he says he owes much of his success to a formidable line-up of Irish teammates throughout his career.

O'Driscoll said: "Ronan O'Gara, Peter Stringer, Shane Horgan, Simon Easterby, John Hayes: they all came within six months of my first cap.

"I think we all had a big say in guiding expectation levels first of all, but performance after that, to a place where we feel it should be.

"Now the onus is on every younger guy coming through, seeing that is the benchmark, to carry that on into the future."

The tributes to O'Driscoll have come thick and fast ahead of his 140th cap. Ireland captain Paul O'Connell said O'Driscoll had single-handedly transformed Irish rugby, while Fergus McFadden hailed him as Ireland's greatest ever sportsman.

Given the physicality of O'Driscoll's game, Ireland coach Joe Schmidt said he is not sure how the 35-year-old has amassed so many caps. He will surpass George Gregan's 139 when he takes to the field in Dublin tomorrow.

Ever the team player, O'Driscoll has rejected these tributes. He said: "Of course [they're] over the top. I think I was very lucky I came in at a time when there was great young talent coming through.

"You see the guys that began around the same time, like Gordon D'Arcy who is still here. So I didn't make anything happen, we all did."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.

  • Rugby

    RFU apologises after kit gaffe

    After two days of fending off brickbats, the RFU has apologised "to those who may have taken offence" over the new England playing kit

  • Football

    Costa can't start three games a week, admits Mourinho

    Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho says Diego Costa did not start his side's opening Champions draw with Schalke because the striker was not fit enough

  • Football

    Boateng stunner breaks City hearts

    Manchester City came within minutes of a precious point in Munich only for Jerome Boateng to haunt his former club with a wonder winner

  • Football

    Wasteful Chelsea punished by Schalke

    Chelsea were denied victory in their opening Champions League group game against Schalke, but Jose Mourinho's side will only have themselves to blame after wasting several clear-cut chances in the 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge

  • Golf

    Scott and Williams part ways after three years

    In a move that has been in the making for months, Adam Scott and caddie Steve Williams have parted ways after a three-plus-year partnership that included the first Masters victory by an Australian golfer

Sponsored Links
Make $170 in 60 seconds!
Google Vs Facebook, 60 sec. knock out! Choose a champion, Become a Winner!
Make $25 in 1 Minute!
Start trading with the biggest broker! Register now to receive $25 for FREE!