O'Driscoll on Gatland: "He's never been shy of big calls"

He named Peter O'Mahony as captain for the opening test

O'Driscoll on Gatland: "He's never been shy of big calls"

Warren Gatland and Brian O'Driscoll. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Former Lions captain Brian O'Driscoll has praised Warren Gatland for making some tough decisions as the first test against New Zealand approaches.

The former Irish captain joined Thursday's Off the Ball to discuss the Lions team selected ahead of the opening game of the 2017 series against New Zealand. 

"Gats has made some bold calls," he told Dave McIntyre, adding: "He's never been shy of big calls and I think it's brave and I think it's the right call. Warburton is not the best "7" on tour at the moment.

"It's interesting to see him on the bench - is he a good bench player? Is he the sort of impact you're looking for? I'm not fully sure on that. For me, he's probably a starter or not in the "23" at all. 

Peter O'Mahony. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

"But Pete is totally deserving of the honour. He's a really, really wise head on still fairly relatively young shoulders. He's only 27 or 28 but he just has a wiseness to him and obviously, at training, he has built a huge respect from fellow teammates who see his leadership and the way he plays.

"Not necessarily the way he speaks, he does speak very well but it's about how he plays and that aggressive, confrontational game that he plays. I think that's a big statement from the Lions," he added.

O'Driscoll went on to give his views on the recent call-ups to the squad and you can listen to the entire BODcast here: