Brian O’Driscoll Names The Six Nations Team He Hated Losing To Most & Why
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If you asked any current or former Irish Rugby player which Six Nations team they hated the most losing to – you’d probably expect the answer would be old rivals England considering the history.
Former Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll has been in many Six Nations battles over the years but when asked this week on Off The Ball if England were the worst Six Nations team to lose the centre replied with an emphatic “No!”
O’Driscoll said generally it was “exciting” to play England because more often than not they were one fo the world’s best teams.
“It’s exciting playing well against the likes of England because more often than not they are one of the best teams in the world,” O’Driscoll said.
“If you can park the history, you know you’re going to have to excel in your performance to beat them, be it home or away. That’s the thrill players get and you feed off the public’s perception how important it is to beat England and you enjoy the adulation that comes with that.
“But, I don’t think they’re the most difficult to lose to.”
In terms of worst teams to lose, O’Driscoll said that accolade had to go to Wales for a number of reasons, including how Gatland felt he was treated by Ireland during his spell there.
“There’s been a lot of niggle with Wales for a number of years,” O’Driscoll said.
“The way Gats felt the way he was treated in Ireland when being kicked to touch for Eddie (O’Sullivan), that dragged on for a number of years.
“There was always a nice bit of niggle between ourselves and Wales. The Welsh, who would have thought it?
“There’s nothing worse than being in Cardiff when Wales have won if you’re Irish… there’s nothing worse.
“In sport, it’s the worst place… they (Wales) are the worst winners. I do think because of the history, and Gats drove it into his players that Ireland was the big game.”
O’Driscoll added that he reckons the feeling was mutual between the two sides.
“Sam Warburton spoke about it a while ago, about the perceived animosity between Wales and England was nothing to what they felt when they came over and played us, or when we played them in Cardiff,” O’Driscoll added.
“I think the feeling was probably mutual. We had plenty of big games against them as well.
“They probably got the better of us in the big games – the Grand Slam in ’05, they beat us in the quarter-final of the World Cup in 2011.
“There are some pretty big moments in games and thankfully we did get one up on them in 2009.”