Thursday 22 February 2018

Brian O'Driscoll offers a sage piece of advice to Irish players hoping to impress Warren Gatland

Brian O'Driscoll and Warren Gatland were at Temple Street Children's Hospital today
Brian O'Driscoll and Warren Gatland were at Temple Street Children's Hospital today Newsdesk Newsdesk

Irish legend Brian O'Driscoll has advised players to focus on team, rather than individual, performances over the next seven weeks as they try to earn a place in Warren Gatland's squad for this year's Lions Tour of New Zealand.

After the historic victory over New Zealand in Chicago last November, a large contingent of Irish players are expected to make 37-man squad for the trip Down Under.

A lot of selection decisions are expected to come down to the wire and how players perform over the coming weeks for their countries will more than likely decide the tight calls.

Speaking to RTE Sport today, O'Driscoll, who toured with the Lions on four occasions and captained the team in 2005, offered one piece of advice to the Irish players in the running.

"If I was to pass on one piece of advice to anyone who has Lions aspirations, the best way to get your foot on the place is by winning as a collective, winning the Six Nations. You are going to put yourself in the shop window," he said.

"You will have had to play good rugby, you'll have had to play winning rugby.

"Ireland are in a good place. They are a team that has beaten New Zealand in this last rugby season and that will serve as a reminder to Gats when it comes 50-50 decisions. Our guys know what it's like to turn them over and being in that tough environment and managing to get through.

"If they are able to couple beating the All Blacks with really good showings in the Six Nations then we should be confident of getting a number of players on the plane."

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