herald

Tuesday 21 August 2018

BOD almighty! Kisses and hugs as Leinster's hero is back at last

IN BOD we trust. Leinster may have fallen to a late, late one-point defeat against Ospreys but the mere sight of Brian O'Driscoll back in blue has us dreaming of May glory.

O'DRISCOLL came off after 58 minutes to a rousing reception from the Leinster faithful that had packed the RDS to see his return.

He returned to the bench with a beaming smile, conversing with young Leinster supporters delighted to see their hero back last night.

The teak-tough rugby player couldn't help but be a little embarrassed as two young kids, who could not have been more than five or six years old, lovingly embraced him.

O'Driscoll had not played a competitive game of rugby since Ireland's agonising Rugby World Cup quarter-final defeat to Wales in New Zealand.

Injury

In November he underwent surgery on a niggly neck/shoulder, an injury which had threatened to end his career.

He had been expected to miss the entire season, but once again the Irish legend showed his incredible powers of recovery to return six weeks ahead of schedule to spearhead Leinster's drive for the Rabodrect Pro12 title and the prospect of a third Heineken Cup triumph in four years. "I thought Brian showed a bit of spark, I was really happy with how he put in his 58 minutes," Leinster boss Joe Schmidt said after the game

BOD wasn't on the pitch for the Richard Hibbard try with three minutes to go, or the incredible conversion from man-of-the-match Dan Biggar, which hit the top of the upright and robbed Leinster of victory. It ended their 20-game winning streak on a 22-23 scoreline.

The crowd also witnessed the debut of Brad Thorn and the return of captain Leo Cullen.

hnews@herald.ie

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