Rugby Digest: Declan Kidney’s Ronan O’Gara ax could backfire


Replacements: Cronin, Kilcoyne, O’Callaghan, Henderson, Reddan, Fitzgerald.
Heaslip Warns Teammates

IRELAND captain Jamie Heaslip has warned his teammates to beware the Ronan O’Gara lesson as they prepare to face France on Saturday.

O’Gara was ruthlessly axed by coach Declan Kidney for the match after Ireland lost consecutive games to England and then Scotland.

Heaslip is adamant any player can suffer the same fate if they don’t deliver against the French.

“In terms of who gets in and who gets out that is a decision for the management,” said Heaslip.

“Ronan has been a great player. He’s a great squad guy as well and now there’s an opportunity for someone else to step in.

“We set our standards very high in training and our standards high in the game as well, and when you don’t step up to that level I suppose the coaches have to make a decision then.”

Rugby Shorts - Munster Draws; Leinster Wins

MUNSTER drew 13-13 with the Ospreys in the Rabo 12 League last weekend when Leinster won 26-19 away to Newport Dragons. Connacht won 23-19 against Zebre while Ulster also drew, 29-29 at home to Treviso . . . 

LEINSTER have snapped up out-half Jimmy Gopperth from Newcastle Falcons on a two-year deal as they look to replace Paris bound Jonathon Sexton . ULSTER and Ireland winger Tommy Bowe has admitted it is unlikely that he will recover from knee surgery in time to tour Australia with the Lions this summer . . .

CONNACHT backs coach Billy Millard is to leave his job at the end of the season to move to the United States . . .

FORMER Australian captain and Leinster flanker Rocky Elsom has signed for Toulon.