Ronan O'Gara: An ambitious dressing room shouldn’t be confused with a confession box

Ronan O'Gara: An ambitious dressing room shouldn’t be confused with a confession box

We had moments in that successful Munster dressing room. The outbursts were never calculated though, even in training.

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Ronan O'Gara: Have we seen the last of 'coach-in-waiting' Tyler Bleyendaal at Munster?

Ronan O'Gara: Have we seen the last of 'coach-in-waiting' Tyler Bleyendaal at Munster?

Ronan O'Gara shares his thoughts on "coach-in-waiting" Bleyendaal upon his retirement from playing.

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Ronan O'Gara: The golden qualities of a proper leader and captain

Ronan O'Gara: The golden qualities of a proper leader and captain

Sam Cane is the newly appointed New Zealand captain. All Blacks coach Ian Foster named the Waikato Chief last week as the man to lead his group through to the 2023 ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Caught between the uncertainty of the present and the risks of the future

Ronan O'Gara: Caught between the uncertainty of the present and the risks of the future

At La Rochelle’s Stade Marcel Deflandre yesterday, we had a detailed meeting about the short- and medium-term financial imperatives for the club. Line by line. ...

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Ronan O’Gara: Wanting things too badly isn’t always so clever

Ronan O’Gara: Wanting things too badly isn’t always so clever

As the kid said to Bob Geldof after Live Aid: ‘Is that it?’ Formal confirmation came at lunchtime on Thursday that the French Top 14 season is over, ...

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Ronan O'Gara: I was no Beauden Barrett or Dan Carter, so…

Ronan O'Gara: I was no Beauden Barrett or Dan Carter, so…

Get your compass readings and timepieces out. We are about to return to one of the most vexed items in this increasingly scrambled head of mine, writes Ronan O'Gara ...

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Ronan O'Gara: All aboard the post-virus rugby fun bus

Ronan O'Gara: All aboard the post-virus rugby fun bus

These are challenging times, tough times.

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Ronan O'Gara: Using the lockdown to get off the hamster wheel

Ronan O'Gara: Using the lockdown to get off the hamster wheel

The text from the sports editor set quite the challenge. ‘Don’t spread the virus by writing about it. We’re all good for that stuff’, writes ...

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Ronan O'Gara: One in the eye for the agents provocateurs?

Ronan O'Gara: One in the eye for the agents provocateurs?

For years I was easy bait. Then there was a stage where I settled the head and the heart-rate and understood the game the opposition was trying to play. And you ...

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Ronan O'Gara: The big takeaway: This team needs new young blood

Ronan O'Gara: The big takeaway: This team needs new young blood

S OMETIMES the conclusions are the same at every level. In the coach’s box. In the tv studio. In the pub and at home with a cup of tea.

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Ronan O'Gara: Earls has more credit in the bank than Stockdale

Ronan O'Gara: Earls has more credit in the bank than Stockdale

Quite a lot was achieved in Ireland’s last Six Nations victory over Wales in Dublin.

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Ronan O'Gara: A cranky moment can set you back months as a coach

Ronan O'Gara: A cranky moment can set you back months as a coach

I don’t get cranky anymore. New Zealand and the Crusaders buried all that. I have learned that connecting with people is the cornerstone of good coaching.

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Ronan O’Gara: It was like standing on the tee at Whistling Straits. There’s some buzz off it

Ronan O’Gara: It was like standing on the tee at Whistling Straits. There’s some buzz off it

So Andy Farrell opted to play safe last weekend with his selection against Scotland?

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Ronan O'Gara: If Andy Farrell’s Ireland has stars like Tim Bateman, they’re good to go

Ronan O'Gara: If Andy Farrell’s Ireland has stars like Tim Bateman, they’re good to go

The Super Rugby season kicks off tomorrow Down Under. But I’d like to talk about Tim Bateman.

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Ronan O'Gara: 'That’s the burning ambition for me - to coach Ireland'

Ronan O'Gara: 'That’s the burning ambition for me - to coach Ireland'

TOMORROW La Rochelle entertain Montpellier in the Top 14. There’s a lot riding on it, but I’ve been saying that for every one of the previous 13 games.

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Ronan O'Gara: Munster lack killer nous to turn three into seven

Ronan O'Gara: Munster lack killer nous to turn three into seven

In the 19th minute of the pivotal Pool 4 Champions Cup meeting in Paris last Sunday, JJ Hanrahan and his Munster colleagues jogged back behind halfway to receive ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Bring the boots and gumshield. Leave the Bose headphones at home

Ronan O'Gara: Bring the boots and gumshield. Leave the Bose headphones at home

IT’S never 20 years already since we checked back into Merignac Airport in Bordeaux with that seminal 31-25 Heineken Cup win over Toulouse in our back pockets? ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Ask the local boulangerie about relegation anxiety. He’ll tell ya

Ronan O'Gara: Ask the local boulangerie about relegation anxiety. He’ll tell ya

Sometimes it helps to take all the guesswork out of who should be playing for Ireland by actually going hard at each other.

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Ronan O’Gara: Decision made: Shut up and kick the penalty Rog

Ronan O’Gara: Decision made: Shut up and kick the penalty Rog

We were up in the wildish Scottish yonder last Saturday when this kerfuffle at Saracens broke out.

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Ronan O'Gara: Razor didn’t fall short at all in All Blacks bid

Ronan O'Gara: Razor didn’t fall short at all in All Blacks bid

Being a strong advocate of Scott Robertson to replace Steve Hansen as All Blacks coach does not mean Ian Foster is not the right fit in my eyes.

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Ronan O'Gara: Munster’s Saturday sweet spot, balls and all

Ronan O'Gara: Munster’s Saturday sweet spot, balls and all

It's 20 years since Munster did that number on Francois Pienaar’s Saracens at Thomond Park.

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Ronan O'Gara: Why is that wonky ball going anywhere except where it’s told?

Ronan O'Gara: Why is that wonky ball going anywhere except where it’s told?

If JJ Hanrahan is looking for anyone to cuddle him up and tell him a bedtime story, he’s kidding himself. The Munster ten should have dropped that goal to ...

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Prendy’s done plenty of bóithríns to get to the Champs-Élysées

Prendy’s done plenty of bóithríns to get to the Champs-Élysées

In the throes of the action, I’ll be like every other fan, intrigued by Racing 92’s Heineken Cup visit to Thomond Park tomorrow.

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Saracens and their manipulation of salary cap taking rugby to a really bad place

Saracens and their manipulation of salary cap taking rugby to a really bad place

Whatever about losing the World Cup final, English rugby had every right to be feeling good about itself and the future of the game after a successful tournament ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Jones has delivered form when it mattered

Ronan O'Gara: Jones has delivered form when it mattered

The best pair of teams at the World Cup met in the first semi-final last Saturday. The number one priority for Eddie Jones and England is getting to that pitch again ...

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The manner of Ireland’s World Cup exit was so bad on so many levels

The manner of Ireland’s World Cup exit was so bad on so many levels

That Ireland could lose a World Cup quarter-final to the All Blacks is not a major shock in itself. New Zealand just have better cattle, as I said in last week’s ...

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O'Gara: Ireland need Sexton on pitch and scoring

O'Gara: Ireland need Sexton on pitch and scoring

That New Zealand have stated they will target Johnny Sexton is hardly a galloping shock. Johnny’s had that for a lot of his career, but it remains fundamentally ...

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O'Gara: This Rugby World Cup is about to get properly serious

O'Gara: This Rugby World Cup is about to get properly serious

Sit steady and stop fidgeting. The World Cup is about to get properly serious.

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Blown off course but organisers must find way to play Japan-Scotland

Blown off course but organisers must find way to play Japan-Scotland

A friend texted me Wednesday night indicating France’s final World Cup Pool C game against England was going to fall victim to the typhoon hammering Japan.

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Ronan O'Gara: Ireland’s confidence is skin deep. It’s not deep in their bones

Ronan O'Gara: Ireland’s confidence is skin deep. It’s not deep in their bones

This becomes a delicate balancing act now. There are some very smart people in the Irish backroom team with Joe Schmidt, but this is mostly about the Irish players ...

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For rattled Ireland, World Cup solutions won't come in a manual

For rattled Ireland, World Cup solutions won't come in a manual

There’s no instruction manual for managing these World Cup disappointments. In the early noughties, Spain went through a succession of big football tournament ...

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There’s been a subtle tweak to Ireland’s gameplan since Twickenham mauling

There’s been a subtle tweak to Ireland’s gameplan since Twickenham mauling

Seeing Joe Schmidt is happy to do so, let’s start with Jack Carty. Even as recently as a week ago, if an Irish team to face the World Cup hosts had been named ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Pumas under the pump as Les Blues pressure eases at Rugby World Cup

Ronan O'Gara: Pumas under the pump as Les Blues pressure eases at Rugby World Cup

One of the many things to savour about a high-octane tournament like the World Cup is embedding yourself in the post-match scenarios of several countries. Imagining ...

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Schmidt’s made Ireland what no predecessor could — consistent

Schmidt’s made Ireland what no predecessor could — consistent

In 2003’s summer, before the World Cup that autumn, Ireland travelled to Australia and onto the South Sea Islands for a three-game series. I didn’t get ...

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Ronan O'Gara: Do Ireland need Warren Gatland coming over the hill smelling blood?

Ronan O'Gara: Do Ireland need Warren Gatland coming over the hill smelling blood?

Had a thought this morning. If Joe Schmidt was offered a pass on tomorrow’s final World Cup warm-up game against Warren Gatland’s Wales in Dublin, would ...

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