Sunday 25 August 2019

'I don't think it's a good look for our game' - Brian O'Driscoll on Beirne's role in controversial Munster penalty

Tadhg Beirne of Munster is tackled by Grant Gilchrist of Edinburgh during the Heineken Champions Cup Quarter-Final match between Edinburgh and Munster at BT Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh, Scotland. Photo by Paul Devlin/Sportsfile
Tadhg Beirne of Munster is tackled by Grant Gilchrist of Edinburgh during the Heineken Champions Cup Quarter-Final match between Edinburgh and Munster at BT Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh, Scotland. Photo by Paul Devlin/Sportsfile
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Brian O'Driscoll says that Tadhg Beirne's theatrical reaction in winning a crucial late penalty for Munster in the Champions Cup quarter-final win over Edinburgh 'isn't a good look' for the sport.

Referee Pascal Gauzrre reversed a penalty decision after Edinburgh prop Pierre Schoeman was ruled to have shouldered Beirne, but the second row has come in for criticism for falling to the ground after what looked to be minimal contact.

Munster subsequently scored a try through Keith Earls, which was the key score in their 17-13 win. Speaking on Off The Ball on Newstalk, Brian O'Driscoll weighed in on the controversial moment and said that Beirne 'didn't have to sell' the contact in the manner that he did.

"If he is your team-mate you are saying 'thanks for milking us the penalty' and if you are looking from outside you are saying 'get up' and in the words of Nigel Owens, 'this is not soccer'," O'Driscoll said.

"I saw some stuff on social media and people are not happy with the manner he threw himself to the ground. There was no doubt he gets impacted but it's a big sell. The dramatics of the fall is definitely what caught the TMO's eye. Ultimately it probably is a penalty but I don't think you have to sell it that way. I don't think it's a good look for our game."

O'Driscoll also expressed his regret after Leinster star Dan Leavy was ruled out of the rest of the season as well as the World Cup in the autumn following a serious leg injury.

"It is a sickening, sickening blow for him," O'Driscoll added.

"I was watching the game and could see immediately when he got caught that he put his hands up to his face and I knew that it was a bad one.

International Rugby Newsletter

Rugby insights and commentary from our renowned journalists like Neil Francis, Will Slattery, Alan Quinlan & Cian Tracey.

"The guy who calls back the footage was showing it beside me and I couldn't watch it. I saw it to the point of where the force came against him, and at that point it was nasty. My thoughts are with him - it sounds like a horrendous injury.

"The concern is that it's not just his World Cup potentially gone; when you're talking about that complicated an injury that early on after the incident - potentially there are bigger ramifications about how serious an injury it could be, so I just hope that it is an injury that he can recover from as he has a lot of good years ahead of him."

Online Editors

The Left Wing: The 'hell' of World Cup training camp, Ireland's half-back dilemma and All Blacks uncertainty

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport