THE award-winning writer Paul Kimmage has sensationally resigned as the ghost-writer of Brian O’Driscoll’s autobiography.
The pair had been working on the much-anticipated book for a number of years – and it is due to be published in the autumn.
The publisher Penguin Ireland has announced this afternoon that Alan English, the editor of the Limerick Leader newspaper, is to take over as ghost-writer on the project.
Reacting to the news, the former Ireland and Lions captain O’Driscoll said: “I have enjoyed working with Paul over the last few years and it is unfortunate that we cannot complete this project together.
“However, I look forward to working with Alan.”
Penguin Ireland said it “regretfully accepts” the resignation of Mr Kimmage.
Michael McLoughlin, Managing Director, Penguin Ireland said: “I would like to thank Paul Kimmage for the hard work he has put into this project.
“We are delighted that Alan English has stepped in to write what is the most eagerly awaited sports autobiography for many years.
“Alan is somebody we have worked with closely on two previous books and we are sure he will do Brian’s story justice.”
Last Friday, Kimmage posted several curious messages on his Twitter account that left his almost 40,000 followers a little perplexed.
"Blessed are the meek for they shall be trampled on," tweeted the writer, followed by a quote from Brigitte Bardot: "I leave before being left. I decide."
Users of the social media platform are now wondering if the mysterious posts were an indication of what was to come in today's announcement.
Two years ago, O'Driscoll signed a book deal with Penguin Ireland to write his autobiography with Kimmage.
However, O'Driscoll had always insisted that the book would not be published until he finished playing rugby.
Last year, O'Driscoll signed a one-year extension with the IRFU, meaning that this is to be his final season. The book is still expected to be released in time for the lucrative Christmas market.
The book is expected to one of the highest selling sports biographies ever released in this country. O'Driscoll's is long regarded as the greatest player of his generation and he was voted World Rugby Player of the Decade (2000-2009) by the magazine 'Rugby World'.