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Last Updated: Saturday, 22 September 2007, 10:40 GMT 11:40 UK
'Despicable' rumours anger O'Gara
Ronan O'Gara
O'Gara and his Ireland colleagues lost against France on Friday
Ronan O'Gara has described allegations that he has had gambling and marital problems as "despicable".

In answer to reports that appeared in the French media on Wednesday, O'Gara denied he has accumulated large debts through betting on horse racing.

O'Gara, part of Ireland's struggling World Cup team, also rubbished rumours he has separated from his wife Jess.

"The most important thing is that people who know me realise there is no truth in these stories," said O'Gara.

The 30-year-old added: "It was difficult for a day or two after these stories came out.

"I'll be seeking advice to find out what is the best way for my wife and I to deal with the stories.

It was said in L'Equipe that I owed 300,000 euros. That's a load of nonsense

Ronan O'Gara

"The gambling affront doesn't bother me because I'll say it straight up - I do back horses and do it frequently.

"I own racehorses and have placed bets since I was 18.

"It was said in L'Equipe that I owed 300,000 euros. That's a load of nonsense."

The Munster and Lions fly-half said he was "disappointed" by the claim that he has a "troubled marriage".

"It's not for me to say I have a perfect marriage.

"Like everyone else little things happen but that's behind closed doors at home.

"I love my wife and she loves me, that's all I can say on the matter.

Ronan has coped very well with the pressure

Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan

"There have been rumours about me going around for a year now. The only good thing is that it's all come out and has now been put to bed.

"It's been despicable. Talk about disputes in your marriage and being told you've been kicked out of your own home is the lowest of the low."

O'Gara made little impression during Friday night's 25-3 defeat by France but Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan denied the off-field distractions are affecting his form.

O'Sullivan said: "Ronan has coped very well with the pressure. People will look at his performance against France and probably point the finger at him.

"For Ronan to play in a good zone he needs a good flow of possession.

"One of our key sources of possession last night wasn't the best part of our game, so you have to factor that into his performance."



SEE ALSO
France 25-3 Ireland
21 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union
As it happened - France 25-3 Ireland
21 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union
Rugby World Cup photos
21 Sep 07 |  Rugby Union


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