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Brian O’Driscoll: One English...
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Brian O’Driscoll: One English player might make Irish XV

Cian Roche
Cian Roche

08:30 23 Jan 2019

Former Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll says that just one player from England's current squad would challenge for a place in Ireland's starting 15 ahead of the Six Nations Championship.

Joe Schmidt's side go into the competition as defending Grand Slam champions and have lost just once in the last 12 months. Because of their victory against the All Blacks in November and Test series success down in Australia during the summer, O'Driscoll said he was confident that Ireland's current panel was as good, if not better, than any in the world.

"I was asked what England player, if I could pick one, would I want to bring across," he said on Wednesday's OTB AM with Eoin Sheahan and Ger Gilroy.

"I went through the whole team and the journalist said: 'So, that's none.'

"Then I back tracked because I didn't want him to print 'no one' in the article, so I told him a fit Manu Tuliangi would. But then, I don't think you're dropping either of our guys [for him].

"Maybe Billy [Vunipola] makes it."

Discussing OTB AM's Depth Chart, the 40-year-old highlighted the current strength across the board within Schmidt's ranks and Ireland's ability to rotate experienced internationals ahead of this year's World Cup in Japan.

"Take the second row. James Ryan for me is in, that's it. You've got Dev Toner for your line-out and now what he's doing around the park.

"Our front row... England's hooker is no better than Rory Best no matter what their options are.

"In the back row, Billy would have been the [only] choice."

You can watch more analysis ahead of this year's Six Nations Championship next week right here.

 

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