Sport Guinness Pro12

Wednesday 17 September 2014

O’Driscoll return provides huge boost as Leinster look to rescue season

Published 04/01/2013 | 05:00

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Brian O'Driscoll

BRiAN O'DRISCOLL holds the key to Leinster and Ireland's seasons as he returns to action in the Pro12 against Edinburgh tonight.

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A fit O'Driscoll represents a major weapon in the arsenals of both his club and country, and at his peak he would also strengthen immeasurably the Lions' prospects in Australia. O'Driscoll's bid to make a fourth successive tour begins in Murrayfield.

Leinster face Edinburgh tonight, eight days before they seek to rescue their European crown in the first of their final two Heineken Cup Pool games. With this in mind the return of O'Driscoll could not be better timed, especially as he makes it alongside two other Lions, Rob Kearney and Luke Fitzgerald.

This trio represent all that is exciting about Leinster and Lions coach Warren Gatland will certainly be interested in how both O'Driscoll and Kearney in particular fare tonight.

Leinster's season hangs by a thread after they lost their back-to-back European games against Clermont Auvergne in December.

The defending champions will be hoping that the return of their star men, as well as the expected comeback of Isa Nacewa next week, will be enough to bring them back into championship contention.

For those players to make the difference, Leinster's pack must improve. Much of the load for this will be borne by Mike Ross, who is currently in contract negotiations with the IRFU to extend his stay with Leinster.

If he can lock the scrum and provide the platform for Leinster's superstar backs to shine, there is much for Blues fans to look forward to.

Irish Independent

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