Rugby

O'Connell to captain Ireland

2011-12-30 16:51
Paul O'Connell (AFP)

Dublin - Veteran Munster lock Paul O'Connell confirmed on Friday he will captain Ireland in the Six Nations in the absence of regular skipper Brian O'Driscoll, who is recovering from shoulder surgery.

Current Munster captain O'Connell has led his country in the past, initially against France in 2004, and also when Ireland played England during their World Cup warm-up series four months ago.

O'Connell was also captain of the 2009 British and Irish Lions in South Africa, and he will take the Ireland reins for their Six Nations opener against Wales in Dublin on February 5.

"The greatest ambition in a player's career is to play for your country, so to captain Ireland is a huge honour for me and I was delighted when (coach) Declan (Kidney) asked me to," said O'Connell.

"I have been lucky to have played for my country on 82 occasions, and during that time I have always felt that the responsibility of leadership should not just rest on the shoulders of Brian and that the senior players are incredibly important.

"We are lucky in the Ireland squad that we have a couple of outstanding leaders across the pitch, and I know that I will be relying on them during the championship."

Kidney added: "With Brian (O'Driscoll) on the rehab trail at the moment, we knew that we had to plan for the captaincy and felt that it was fitting that we announce it at the Christmas camp in front of the squad.

"There are a number of players with strong leadership credentials in the squad who have always been supportive of the captaincy and will be important during the championship.

"Paul has always been one of those leaders in the squad, and I was delighted that he accepted the honour and the responsibilities that it brings.

"I know that he will bring through his experience to the position in the championship."

Ireland's first Six Nations game is a rematch of their recent World Cup quarter-final against Wales in Wellington, when O'Connell and company made their exit.

After Wales, Ireland face France in Paris, then host Italy and Scotland before finishing the tournament with a Twickenham appointment against England on March 17.

Read more on:    paul o'connell
NEXT ON SPORT24X

Bulls duo to miss training

2014-07-28 18:25

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @04:00
  • SS4
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @05:00
  • SS7
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @06:00
  • SS5
    Mon, 28 Jul 2014 @06:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

We're down to four teams left in contention for the 2014 Super Rugby title. Who will be crowned champions?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.