Monday 20 November 2017

Drico: We must win the series

LEINSTER and Ireland talisman Brian O'Driscoll has admitted that he would rather go on holidays than be a part of another losing Lions party.

The 33-year-old, who returned to light training with Leinster this week, ahead of his return from an ankle injury, has been touted as a possible Lions captain for next year's tour of Australia.

While the prospect is very tempting, BOD would only travel if he improved on his Lions record which reads six test matches and five defeats.

"If you said you can get on the trip to Australia but you are not going to win the series I would have no interest," O'Driscoll said.


"I have already done three tours. The only reason to go on another Lions trip would be to win the series, to do something that I haven't experienced before.

"I've been to Australia before, I've seen a lot of the route and I've seen all the places. It's great but I can go on my holidays and do that. It's all about winning the series.

"I don't want to go on four Lions tours and win none of them. People don't remember losing Lions tours, they only remember winning tours. Different guys will go at different stages of their careers and some will enjoy the excitement of a first trip, but I don't need any more experience, I just want to win one. And the Lions need to win one. They are wonderful trips but they are unsustainable if you go time and time again and the home nation always wins.

"It's such a difficult thing in the modern era and that's not to take away to the tours in the Seventies, and even prior to that. Now it's much more compact and the teams you play are more organised. This series is very winnable whatever team goes down there, but it's very losable too."

BOD's Lions career has two real abiding memories -- his stellar try in a sensational 29-13 win in the first Test at the Gabba in 2001, when he sliced the Aussie defence to pieces, and when he was carried out of the 2005 tour he was captaining to New Zealand on a stretcher with a dislocated shoulder, having been the victim of the notorious spear tackle by Tana Umaga and Keven Mealamu 40 seconds into the first Test.

In 2009, O'Driscoll's participation ended midway through the second Test when he knocked himself out making a thunderous tackle on Danie Rossouw.

If fit and in form, O'Driscoll is a certainty for the plane and in line for the captaincy but BOD believes the captain would have to be a guaranteed test starter.

"It would be impossible to turn down the opportunity if I was asked to be captain again, even though there are huge stresses that go with it. So many names are being bandied around at the moment that I genuinely don't take much heed.

"Your captain needs to be starting in the Test team, and it is difficult to say at this stage that there is anyone in Britain and Ireland who is guaranteed to be starting."

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