Stephen Ferris Recalls Brilliant Joe Schmidt Story That Shows His Attention To Detail


If you make a mistake off the pitch, chances are you’ll do the same on the pitch.

That’s the Joe Schmidt way of thinking according to former Ireland and Ulster back-row Stephen Ferris. Schmidt has been heralded a perfectionist over the years and it’s his attention to detail that has made him one of the world’s very best according to most.

This latest story from Ferris regarding his Ulster teammate Andre Trimble, shows just how much focus the Kiwi puts on the little things and how small margins, and careful attentions to detail can make a better rugby player.


Ferris recalls a story he was once told where Andrew Trimble was at Carlton House with the Irish Rugby team, and how he accidentally left his key-card for his room behind. Schmidt was not impressed with the winger.

Joe Schmidt is sitting in the team room and he’s sitting on the couch. There’s a keycard sitting on the sofa. He picked up the keycard went up to reception and said ‘Can you tell me whose keycard that is?’

‘Yeah, it’s A. Trimble 216.’

‘No problem.’

He walks the 500 yards back down and two floors up, knocks on the door.

Trimby opens the door ‘OK Joe, how are you doing?’

He says ‘Is this your keycard Andrew?’

‘Did I leave that down in the team room Joe?’

He says ‘Yeah. You make mistakes off the pitch, you’ll make mistakes on the pitch. Don’t let it happen again.’

A fascinating insight into the mindset of one of the world’s very best.

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