Sunday 22 April 2018

Baa-Baas best for Deans at Thomond

Robbie Deans
Robbie Deans

Daragh Small

Barbarians coach Robbie Deans says his side's game against Ireland at Thomond Park on May 28 (7.45pm) has the potential to be a classic.

Deans, who is currently head coach at Panasonic in the Japanese Top League, was in charge of Australia between 2008 and 2013.

That coincided with Ireland's shock 15-6 victory over the Aussies at the World Cup in New Zealand in 2011 and he believes the current crop of Irish players could go all the way and win the event this time around.

In the 125th anniversary of the Barbarians, Deans will take control of the side that take on Ireland before going to Twickenham where they face England on May 31.

They also play a special game against Heriot's on April 21 to celebrate the Edinburgh club's 125th anniversary.

Last year the Barbarians beat England 39-29 before losing 40-36 to Australia in November and Deans is looking forward to bringing the Barbarians to Limerick.

"To me, the Barbarians concept is everything that's good about the game," said Deans.

"It's about the team aspect, the camaraderie of the game, looking to play positively and constructively, being prepared to take some risks and also wanting to win.

"Limerick is the heart of Ireland and the public there will really add to the occasion.

"Then you'll have an Irish team that will be playing for World Cup spots and the Baa-Baas team who will want to maintain their traditions and add to the spectacle. It should be great."

Irish Independent

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