Joe Schmidt plays down concerns over Ireland’s Brian O’Driscoll

Leinster's Joe Schmidt plays down concerns over the fitness of Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll after beating the Cardiff Blues

brian o'driscoll
Brian O'Driscoll has 120 Ireland caps Photo: Paul Walsh

brian o'driscoll

Joe Schmidt insists Brian O’Driscoll will not miss the upcoming autumn internationals after the Ireland skipper limped off during his side’s win over Cardiff Blues on Saturday.

The European champions’ huge 55-22 victory was tempered by the departure of O’Driscoll on 25 minutes, shortly after he had created club and country team-mate Jamie Heaslip’s try – Leinster’s third of the evening – with a scintillating break through the Cardiff backline.

The 33-year-old O’Driscoll, who captained Ireland to the Grand Slam in the 2009 Six Nations, appeared to be in severe discomfort when the physios came to treat him.

But with the autumn internationals on the horizon Schmidt was quick to play down the severity of the injury – admitting the substitution was made with O’Driscoll’s upcoming commitments in mind.

“He sprained his ankle. He was going to play on. In the end, we measured up the responsibilities that he has got coming up and we replaced him,” said Leinster’s head coach.

“We don’t think at this stage that it is too serious.”

© Sportsbeat 2012

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