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Management Praised For Team Spirit

Management Praised For Team Spirit

Irish coach Eddie O’Sullivan and team manager Brian O’Brien had praise heaped on their heads from inside a particularly upbeat Irish camp when the squad went training this afternoon.

The Ireland squad made the short coach journey to Teachers Eastern RFC for an afternoon training run. The only player who took no part was Eric Miller, still troubled by the injury picked up in the game in Timaru. The session itself was very light because as Keith Wood explained,

It’s the day after the day after, and it’s only now that the effects of the game on Saturday will be felt.

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With that in mind fitness trainer Mike McGurn was particularly easy on his players who wound up their session with a soccer match that ended in a draw and inevitably, a penalty shoot out. The format was that the players from one side would select the penalty takers from the other so the likes of Brian O’Driscoll and David Humphreys were, naturally, reduced to a spectator role. Anthony Foley and Alan Quinlan were the respective goalkeepers with Foley’s prowess winning it for his side and the celebrations taking a similar line to that which we’ve from the soccer world cup, Foley and Co performing a little dance around the grounded jerseys.

That final act indicates the upbeat mood in the camp despite the disappointment of Saturday’s defeat with Shane Byrne and Reggie Corrigan agreeing that the team spirit and camaraderie was better than we’ve ever experienced on tour before.

It is said Byrne,the best tour I’ve ever been on from that point of view, there really is a very friendly atmosphere, great team spirit which is so important.

It certainly augers well for the second Test and both players paid tribute to coach Eddie O’Sullivan and manager Brian O’Brien for the part they’ve played in keeping the morale at such a high level at the end of a long season.