“It Was Horrible” – Brian O’Driscoll On The Former Teammate Who Was Impossible To Defend

Close quarters.

Former Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll has played alongside some of the best players in the world but it appears no one made a bigger impression on him than former England fullback Jason Robinson.

O’Driscoll toured with Robinson in 2001 with the British and Irish Lions and the former Leinster centre was simply blown away by his incredible talent.

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Speaking on Off The Ball, O’Driscoll said it was “horrible at times” to defend against Robinson’s dazzling footwork in training.

“To get to see in close quarters what he was capable of,” O’Driscoll said.

“You see so much on a Saturday, but when you’re training and playing and watching players of that calibre leading up to a Saturday. You see some exceptional stuff that cameras don’t always catch.

“Jason, I knew so little of him in 2001 other than his rugby league talent. But to have a full appreciation of what his footwork was like, you need to defend against it, and it was horrible at times in training.”

O’Driscoll said that Robinson was one of the most unpredictable players he has ever played against and “packed a serious punch” for a relatively small guy.

“I would’ve analysed him a lot as I played against him, he was equally comfortable on either foot, it made no difference to him,” O’Driscoll added.

“There was no preference on ball carry, you just could not work him out. He honed the ability to be unpredictable as well.

“He might’ve been a small guy, but he packed a serious punch too.”