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Ireland must play angry against All Blacks -- O'Driscoll

The centre admitted that the performance against Australia was simply unacceptable.

IRELAND CENTRE BRIAN O’Driscoll has little doubt that any deficiency in intensity will be made up for when New Zealand visit Lansdowne Road this Sunday.

Immediately after Ireland’s comparatively meek 32 – 15 defeat to Australia both Ronan O’Gara and Paul O’Connell pointed to a lack of urgency from Joe Schmidt’s side from their varying viewpoints in the ruck on on the sideline.

O’Driscoll, who hopes to shake off another calf injury in time to face the All Blacks for the last time, feels that such a basic area of the game will be easily rectified.

“It wouldn’t worry me,” said the former captain at Carton House today.

“It was lacking a bit, but when it’s been put to you by your coaches or peers I think there’ll be no shortage of it this weekend.”

O’Driscoll, 34, will have experienced many ups and downs in his international career and many will have come within a week of one another. This nation so often performs better when the team goes out with a point to prove after a poor performance.

“I think the anger part is anger in ourselves,” the centre added, ”knowing we’ve performed well below par. That’s an annoyance or an anger and different people will use that as motivation to get it right.


“For me it’s definitely a motivating factor; I like to think I have standards of a certain level and if you dip below them, the next time you pull a jersey on you have to put that right – that’s this weekend.”

Along with the absence of that ‘anger’ in the Ireland demeanour, the defeat to the Wallabies was a low point as so many basic defensive errors on view as the visitors ran in four unanswered tries.

O’Driscoll, who shoulders some of the blame himself for the opening try of Saturday night, moved to warn himself and his teammates that anything less than a vast improvement could bring on a repeat of the embarrassment that was the 60 – 0 loss to New Zealand in Hamilton in 2012.

“We were poor [against Australia], that level isn’t acceptable. If we play anything like that level against the All Blacks there is the potential for a cricket score.

“We’ve been licking our wounds a little bit, but there’s a realisation that we need to play with a little bit of anger this weekend and make sure that we’re not lacking any ambition or hunger that wasn’t there last weekend.”

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