RTE pundit and former rugby coach George Hook believes that Irish captain Brian O’Driscoll should retire from international competition following Ireland’s defeat in the World Cup quarter finals at the weekend.
Writing in the Irish Independent, Hook said that he felt the centre was a pale shadow of his former self in recent outings and that he should go with grace, rather than risk serious injury and damage to his reputation. With the Irish side now set for a transition period, the pundit argues that the time has come for Ireland’s greatest ever player to hang up his boots:
“The Irish captain continued his poor form of recent months and never threatened a break of any consequence. More importantly, as the man most used to win ball at the breakdown, he looked physically incapable of competing.
“In the coming weeks O’Driscoll should consider his options. No player has ever given more physically, mentally and emotionally for his country.
“I suspect the price has been huge to his body as he has played far too often when lesser men would have pleaded injury. He should retire with honour now rather than risk serious injury to his health and reputation.