Six Nations: Rivals ‘envious’ of Wales’ ‘unquantifiable quality’ – Brian O’Driscoll

Six Nations: Rivals ‘envious’ of Wales’ ‘unquantifiable quality’ – Brian O’Driscoll

- in World News
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Wales v Italy
Wales beat Italy 48-7 to set up a potential Grand Slam against France
Venue: Stade de France, Paris Date: Saturday, 20 March Kick-off: 20:00 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC One, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru, 5 Live, BBC Sounds, BBC Sport website and app, S4C
Highlights: Scrum V, Sunday, BBC Two Wales, 21 March, from 19:00 GMT and later on demand

Legendary former Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll says Six Nations rivals are “envious” of Wales’ ability to keep competing for the Championship.

Wales are bidding for a second Grand Slam in three seasons when they travel to Paris to face France on Saturday.

Their form has come as a surprise after finishing fifth with just one win in the 2020 Six Nations.

“The rest are envious of that unquantifiable quality that Wales persistently deliver,” said O’Driscoll.

“Credit where credit’s due, year after year, Wales have something special.

“If every Welsh fan is honest there is no way they would have foreseen Wales having a Grand Slam game because of the run of form beforehand.

“They were showing no form and defensively in disarray, and it just shows this is a tournament of momentum.

“Win the first one and you’re off to a great start and it snowballs, and that’s been the case with Wales.”

Wayne Pivac’s Wales are the only side left in this year’s Six Nations able to win the Grand Slam.

Despite losing to England last weekend, France can still win the competition with victory in both their remaining games.

France’s final game, at home against Scotland, has been rescheduled for Friday, 26 March after the match originally planned for 28 February was postponed because of Covid-19 cases in the French camp.

North answering ‘question marks’ at centre

Brian O'Driscoll and George North
Brian O’Driscoll (left) and Tommy Bowe try to tackle George North during the 2011 World Cup quarter-final

One of Wales’ stand-out players in this campaign has been the rejuvenated George North, who now finds himself lining up in a position O’Driscoll is more than familiar with.

“I never saw George as a centre, I always thought there were question marks, but he’s going well and has found a run of form for Wales,” said his former British and Irish Lions team-mate.

“I wouldn’t have anticipated him and Jonathan Davies marrying well together but it’s been good so far.

“He’s had peaks and troughs but the calibre of a true player is being able to respond to criticism, and 100 Test caps by 28 is just insane.”

O’Driscoll, who was speaking to Jonathan Davies on Jiffy’s Six Nations Breakfast on BBC Radio Wales, was also full of praise for the rest of Wales’ backs.

“The back three looks really good; obviously it was a matter of time with [Louis] Rees-Zammit,” added O’Driscoll.

“When you have wheels like that and the ability to finish like that, it is like putting a 16-year-old in an Under-13s game, he’s just able to do things others aren’t.

“Liam Williams has been a great player for a long time, and Josh Adams consistently delivers; he also has that edge that you don’t anticipate in a winger.

“He’s up for the fight and loves a bit of narkiness and he brings that out in the best possible way.”

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