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O'Connor in talks with Reds?

13th May 2014 08:57

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James O Connor London Irish training 2013

James O'Connor: Heading to Brisbane?

According to reports in the Australian press, the Reds have made a contract offer to exiled former Wallaby James O'Connor.

23-year-old O'Connor played his last game for London Irish over the weekend before joining French heavyweights Toulon on a short-term deal for the next European season.

The 44-Test cap utility back is keen to feature for Australia at the next World Cup however, meaning he will have to play Super Rugby in 2015 to be eligible for selection.

Interest from his former team the Western Force seems to have evaporated but Queensland Reds chief Jim Carmichael has smoothed the path for O'Connor's potential return Down Under, saying the Super Rugby team had an "open mind" toward the headline-grabbing youngster who had his national contract torn up after a drunken incident at Perth Airport last year.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald the Reds have tabled an offer for O'Connor's services next season.

"I don't have a closed mind on anything," said Carmichael.

"We're working through what we would call the deficiencies we have as we speak. There's a lot of pressure on us and we need to cop it on the chin, and just live in that pressure cooker at the moment without distracting people with who we may or may not sign.

"In this brutal competition you better make sure you make the right choices when you go after players.

"No one has the luxury of getting it wrong on the field or off it."

"We're looking at a lot of players," Carmichael told The Australian newspaper.

"We're probably three or four players short of a championship team but we might have to recruit five or six players to get the mix right."

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