Planet Rugby

The British & Irish Lions


O'Driscoll axe shocked O'Connell

11th July 2013 13:37


SKY_MOBILE Paul OConnell

Shocked: Paul O'Connell

British and Irish Lions lock Paul O'Connell has publicly questioned the decision to drop Brian O'Driscoll for the third Test.

The Lions went on to win 41-16 in Sydney for the first Test series victory since 1997, with O'Driscoll replaced in the centres by Jamie Roberts and Jonathan Davies.

It was the first time the veteran centre had been dropped for a Test match in his 15-year international career.

O'Connell missed the second and third Tests due to injury and said that the omission of O'Driscoll "felt wrong" ahead of the series decider.

"I was shocked and disappointed," said O'Connell to Today FM.

"After playing so long with him you end up being a bit of a fan. I wouldn't say it took the gloss off it a little bit for me, but it probably did.

"It's a shame he wasn't out there. Even going on the bus with him; I was injured and there were other guys resigned to the fact that they weren't on the team.

"It just felt wrong that he was on the bus with the non-playing squad, not in the 23.

"I thought Brian was playing well. If you look at the first two Tests there wasn't a whole lot of quality ball given to the backline.

"Apart from George North, who had a ball kicked down his throat and created an unbelievable try, there weren't any backs that stood out.

"So it's hard to fathom the logic behind the decision, certainly from my point of view."