Thursday 19 October 2017

We must make star duo want to stay at Leinster -- O'Connor

RUGBY

Jamie Heaslip and Sean O'Brien
Jamie Heaslip and Sean O'Brien
Leinster coach Matt O'Connor
David Kelly

David Kelly

Leinster head coach Matt O'Connor has said it is vital for Irish rugby to "understand the value" of internationals Sean O'Brien and Jamie Heaslip while acknowledging that his club also have a role to play in keeping their stars at home.

Both players are regularly spoken of by interested parties as being targets of high-profile overseas clubs and their value is sure to have soared still further following their outstanding performances in the November Test window.

O'Connor, who joined Leinster just as they were losing out-half Johnny Sexton following the IRFU's much-publicised decision not to match the player's valuation, hopes that history doesn't repeat itself with his star back-rowers.

"Like we have always said, the responsibility is on Leinster to create an environment where they want to stay.

"They have got to make the final decision, but we have to make sure that the environment is such that they want to be a part of it," said O'Connor.

"They are both world-class blokes."

Irish Independent

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