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I spend enough time in tuxedos -- my cravat at the IFTAS was a break from the norm, says BOD

Brian O'Driscoll has hit back at criticism over his choice of attire at this year's IFTA Awards.

The Irish rugby captain stepped out to the glitzy event alongside his wife-to-be, Amy Huberman, wearing a black cravat and suit, coupled with a white shirt.

However style-conscious Brian admits he was disappointed by the negative reaction the outfit provoked from some fashion critics and indeed many of his showbiz friends.

The Leinster star, who is a regular at such events, claims he was trying to stand out from the norm at the Burlington Hotel on February 20.

The actress was also feeling brave on the night, wearing an emerald green, silk, full-length gown by London-based designer Belle and Bunty to the high-profile event.

"In my defence I would just like to say that I spend a fair bit of time wearing tuxedos so I thought I'd try to be a little different and wear a cravat," Brian explained.


"It was to mixed reviews it must be said. Some liked my sartorial style while others took the opportunity to rip me apart," he added.

The popular star went on to explain how he had followed the score of the Leinster versus Scarlets game -- which was taking place at the RDS at the same time -- by texting his Dad.

According to Brian: "I kept up-to-date with how Leinster were getting on through my father's texts. He was at the match.

"Victoria Smurfit did a very good job as a presenter. I kept an eye on a few Hollywood A-listers as well, although I prefer to observe rather than burn any ears," he added.

O'Driscoll's gorgeous other half, Amy is set to go head-to-head with some of the most stylish ladies in the country, including fellow actress Victoria Smurfit, Kathryn Thomas, Morah Ryan and Grainne Seoige, at the Peter Marks VIP Style Awards next Friday night, as they battle it out for the title of Ireland's Most Stylish Woman 2010.

Sportsman, Brian was not short-listed for a nomination however, with his teammate on the pitch, Gordon D'Arcy flying the flag for the rugby players in the category of Most Stylish Irish man.


O'Driscoll has now fully recovered from the accidental blow to the head inflicted upon him by Paul O'Connell's knee, during Ireland's win over England at Twickenham last weekend.

He and his teammates are currently based at Carton House in Maynooth, where they have been busy training for next week's RBS 6 Nations clash with Wales.