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Rugby stars quick to defend BOD as tweeting twits tell him to retire

IRISH rugby stars rounded on Irish fans who suggested that Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll should retire on Twitter.

The bizarre online confrontation came in the aftermath of Ireland's narrow victory over the Scots at Murrayfield on Sunday.

Ireland and Leinster forwards Cian Healy and Jamie Heaslip tackled fans over negative tweets sent to Ireland's record try-scorer O'Driscoll.

The row can be traced back to one tweeter commenting on BOD, stating that he should retire while "we still have good memories of how good you were many years ago" and that he should "go gracefully".

O'Driscoll retweeted the message, which meant that all of his 34,420 of his followers and the majority of his team-mates could view it.

Another hostile fan was slightly less cordial to Ulster prop Tom Court, tweeting him: "You really should retire from international rugby. You are pure crap."

The attack provoked a furious response from Ireland number eight Jamie Heaslip.

"If u got something bad to say, go somewhere else or unfollow...really don't have time for it. results matter, always said that. Laters."

Cian Healy rowed in behind his disgruntled team-mate, saying: "Yes. I am happy, we won... so take your negativity elsewhere please or don't bother following and thank you to the majority."

Injured full-back Rob Kearney also got involved in the discussion, tweeting: "Great win for the boys, let's not forget the massive effort put in by all! Keep the positivity going!"

Glory

Irish golfing ace Rory McIlroy believes that Ireland still have a massive chance at Six Nations glory.

"Well done to the Irish rugby team! A win is a win and still in with a chance!"

Ireland have come in for criticism since their victory on Sunday by allowing Scotland to stay in the game through indiscipline and a high penalty count.

hnews@herald.ie