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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 October, 2003, 12:29 GMT 13:29 UK
Weather fails to dampen Irish spirits

By Brian O'Driscoll
Ireland centre

What a disappointment. The weather in Terrigal has been terrible, really awful.

But we are all looking forward to finally getting out on the pitch on Saturday. That will take our minds off the wet and cold.

What is so galling is that we have no gear for the rain which has fallen quite a lot here. Nor have we warm clothes.

When you consider all our training was done with quite hot weather in mind, then this. Ah well, it will make no difference in the end, we are all focused on Romania and everything else that's ahead of us.

Brian O'Driscoll enjoys the rarity of some dry training in Ireland
Much of Ireland's training has taken place in poor weather

Despite the wet weather, training has been going really well. For a change we have had all 30 players out on the paddock.

There is the usual bumps and bruises and that's to be expected, but nobody in Saturday's 22-man squad is affected.

Everyone is just so keen to get some action. It has been a long old wait. Hopefully, I'll be like a coiled spring.

Despite the inclement weather, everything has been very cosy at our Terrigal base which rolls right down to a gorgeous beach. It's a very picturesque town north of Sydney... if only we had the weather!

It's a lovely spot to really chill out. But we are not getting carried away. Obviously we will not be doing that yet, there's a big job to be done yet and we are fully prepared for it.

The hotel seems to be the focal point of the whole town here and all the locals are really getting behind us now.

There is a lot of warmth being generated towards us here now and, while they will obviously be shouting for Australia, I think there will be quite a lot backing us.

If we get off to a good start against Romania, then we could get a few more rowing in behind us.

Mind you, we still have quite a lot to do against Romania. They will not be that easy. They gave us a hard time last season when we were only a few points up at half-time and they played with a man short for most of the second half.

If we do the basics rights and match their physical element up front, we should start with a win to give our confidence a little nudge in the right direction.





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