For Brian O'DriscolI, it has always been Yannick Jauzion when it should have been Aurelien Rougerie.
When Ireland's God-like hero and France's solid citizen Jauzion have been pitted against each other as greats of the game, it has been as chalk against cheese, the outside centre going against the inside grain.
Really, it has been unkind to both of them. Ireland's record-breaking captain, cap king (107) and try-scorer (41), O'Driscoll has always had to overcome the disadvantage of inferior size and strength with technical know-how and the genius of big match plays.
His revered reputation as a hard man gained further ground yesterday when he was announced fit from a fractured jaw three weeks after receiving a crack against Argentina.
"He is confirmed as 100pc ready to play. It is a very good boost," said coach Joe Schmidt.
Like O'Driscoll (31) Rougerie (30) has been a one club man. The poster boy for the club located in the isolated city of the Massif Central is finding his feet in Clermont Auvergne's attack and France's too.
Capped 57 times, he has taken on Jauzion's ability in finding freedom for his hands to offload out of the tackle.
It is for this very reason that Schmidt has summoned O'Driscoll forth from a cracked jaw to collar Rougerie, to clamp down on his handywork and, in return, bring a level of attacking dexterity to strike fear into Clermont.