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Ronan O'Gara to become 12th Irish player inducted into World Rugby's Hall of Fame

The Munster and Ireland legend is one of five new faces to be included.

Memories: O'Gara celebrates that late, late drop goal in 2009.
Memories: O'Gara celebrates that late, late drop goal in 2009.
Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

FORMER MUNSTER AND Ireland out-half Ronan O’Gara is set to join illustrious company as he’s one of five new faces to be inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame in 2018.

This comes as more good news for the Corkman in a huge week as his Crusaders successfully defended their Super Rugby title on Saturday, capping his first year in New Zealand as assistant coach on a high.

World Rugby this morning announced that O’Gara, Liza Burgess (Wales), Stephen Larkham (Australia), Pierre Villepreux (France) and Bryan Williams (New Zealand) will all receive the Hall of Fame honour.

This years inductees will be honoured at a special ceremony in Rugby, England on Wednesday, 12 September, where their careers and contributions to the game will be celebrated.

The five inductees will bring the total in the Hall of Fame to 142 since its inception in 2006. O’Gara comes as number 139 and becomes the 12th Irishman to be included in the prestigious group.

Brian O’Driscoll was inducted in 2016 and joined Jack Kyle, Willie John McBride, Syd Millar, Tony O’Reilly, Mike Gibson, Ronnie Dawson, Keith Wood, Basil Maclear, Fergus Slattery and Tom Kiernan.

ROG called time on a glittering career in 2013, one in which he was capped 128 times for Ireland and stands as the country’s highest-ever points scorer.

The most valuable of those perhaps came when he scored the winning drop goal against Wales to deliver Ireland’s first Grand Slam in 61 years in 2009.

He also won two Heineken Cups with Munster and was part of three Lions touring parties. He’s enjoyed a successful coaching career since hanging up his boots, spending four and-a-half seasons with Racing 92 before making the move to the Crusaders.

World Rugby Chairman and Hall of Fame inductee Bill Beaumont said:

“The World Rugby Hall of Fame importantly acknowledges and celebrates the true legends of the game, celebrating those who have made outstanding contributions throughout their careers while embodying rugby’s values.

“On behalf of the rugby family we would like to congratulate this year’s five new inductees, Stephen Larkham, Ronan O’Gara, Pierre Villepreux, Byran Williams and Liza Burgess, as they are recognised and honoured for their immense contributions to rugby.

“Each have left their mark on the sport and through their achievements and character, inspired millions to play and support rugby worldwide, and we look forward to honouring them in the coming weeks.”

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Emma Duffy

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