O'Driscoll wants more Wallaby games - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

O'Driscoll wants more Wallaby games

By Darren Walton 14/06/2008 06:55:19 PM Comments (0)

Ireland and British Lions captain Brian O'Driscoll has called for fewer mid-year tours - but maybe more to Australia and New Zealand.

The Irish end a draining campaign started in February with the annual Six Nations championship in Europe with a one-off Test against Australia in Melbourne.

In reality, though, Ireland, like most countries, have been going non-stop for a lot longer than that because of last year's Rugby World Cup in France in September-October.

O'Driscoll said the scheduling demands were taking a toll on players and urged the game's powerbrokers to review the situation.

"What I would say for future reference is that - and I'm certainly not getting on about complaining about the length of this season - but commonsense has to prevail a little bit," he said.

"Maybe the year of a World cup there shouldn't be summer tours because you're going to find players who playing, in a 52-week season or 53-week season, are going to struggle with injuries the following season.

"You'll see that come September, October when we do our next pre-season and guys are still a little fatigued.

"I just think that perhaps people need to look at that for future reference - and I'm only just saying one summer in four years not to have any summer tours.

"I'm sure the game won't suffer too much for that."

As it is, the game's image is suffering because of the tours, with most northern hemisphere nations these days more often than not sending understrength squads to Australia.

It happened last year with Wales, and even South Africa for the Tri Nations tournament, and it will happen again this month when the French lob with a second-string line-up for two Tests against the Wallabies.

O'Driscoll, though, would relish the chance to play the Wallabies and All Blacks more.

"I like the idea of getting to play New Zealand and Australia as many times as I can because there more often than not they're in the top three or four sides in the world, and it's a chance to play against some of the best players," he said.

"So the more often you can do that, the better."

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