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Eddie O'Sullivan Speaks Honestly And Painfully About How He Is Viewed In Ireland

Eddie O'Sullivan Speaks Honestly And Painfully About How He Is Viewed In Ireland
By Conor Neville

Today's Sunday Independent carries an extract from Tom English's upcoming book 'No Borders'. It looks fantastic.

The extract in question focuses on the traumatic denouement of Eddie O'Sullivan's otherwise prosperous reign, beginning with the World Cup build up and ending with Ireland's meek loss in Twickenham in the 2008 Six Nations.

It includes a range of first person testimonies from Eddie himself, Donncha O'Callaghan, Jerry Flannery, David Wallace, Denis Hickie and others about the 2007 World Cup. The players discussed the panic that ran through the camp during the Georgia game, the baseless rumours that sprang up during the competition, and the shame that accompanied their homecoming.

The final word is given to Eddie.

The perception of me in Ireland is bad. I know it is. There's a legacy there from when Warren went. The perception is that I'm a narcissistic control freak who bullies people - all that stuff has been written about me. But I've a good relationship with the players I coached. I think there's a respect there. The only one who has said bad things about me is Geordan Murphy, who wrote some appalling stuff about me in his book. His premise was that I didn't pick him because I didn't like him. That's a horrible thing to say about a coach.

For the sake of the team, for the sake of my family, for my own sake I had to walk after the Six Nations. Leaving was the right thing to do. You can only take so many kickings.

The O'Sullivan-Murphy feud is forever, it appears. Eddie made comments during the '07 World Cup to the effect that Murphy tended to play badly against France. It was seen as harsh at the time, except anyone who remembers the 2006 game in Paris and his attempt at a 'tackle' in the 2007 game in Croke Park might be inclined to agree.


Read the rest of this piece in the Sunday Independent.

Read more: Balls Remembers One Of The Most Harrowing Nights In Irish Rugby History

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