Oâ00Driscoll sliced through in midfield before producing a left-to-right right sidestep reminiscent of the one that left Australiaâ00s Matt Burke for dead during the Lionsâ00 first Test win over the Wallabies eight years ago.
Having been one of the stars of that 2001 Lions series, Oâ00Driscoll went on to lead the tourists against the All Blacks four years later. Unfortunately for Oâ00Driscoll and the Lions, the tour of New Zealand ended in severe disappointment.
A dangerous tackle from Tana Umaga and Keven Mealamu ended Oâ00Driscollâ00s series inside three minutes of the opening Test, with the home side then storming to a series whitewash while the tour captain was forced to sit and watch from the sidelines.
Since then, Oâ00Driscoll has won two further Triple Crowns with his country but Irelandâ00s recent results, particularly in the 2007 World Cup, and Oâ00Driscollâ00s individual performances had seen some critics question his status as the worldâ00s leading centre.
When he first arrived on the international scene at the turn of the millennium, Oâ00Driscoll was known predominantly as an electrifying attacking threat. Now, the Leinster player has far more about his all-round game. He punches way above his weight, organizes the defensive line successfully and wins an incredible amount of turnover ball in the tackle.
Yet, despite these substantial improvements, some have pointed to a supposedly decreasing number of line breaks, a growing lack of sublime scores and a possible loss of pace as reasons to doubt his future at the very top of the international game.
Oâ00Driscoll has fought back in perfect fashion, however, answering his critics in the best possible manner this season. Leinsterâ00s crushing defeat of reigning European champions London Wasps in front of Lions coaches Ian McGeechan and Shaun Edwards featured two classy Oâ00Driscoll scores and his form throughout his provinceâ00s domestic and European campaign have led many to suggest that he is back near his best.
Brian O'Driscoll scored a sensational try against Australia in 2001
Saturdayâ00s try against France in Dublin simply confirmed what the Oâ00Driscoll faithful have known all along; that Irelandâ00s talisman still has plenty to offer.
As well as ensuring Ireland got off to a winning start thanks to a performance the Lions coaching staff would have been pleased to see, Oâ00Driscollâ00s first try since June gave the Ireland skipper a real confidence boost less than four months out from this summerâ00s Lions tour to South Africa.
"It's not the be all and end all but it's nice to get on the scoresheet now and then, just to remind yourself you're still capable of it," said O'Driscoll, who is hoping to be named in his third successive Lions party this April.
"On the whole, it was a very pleasing win for us.â0
Oâ00Driscollâ00s 30-metre effort in the 30-21 victory at Croke Park was his eighth try in 11 Tests against France, taking his Ireland tally to 33. But, although the score showed himself and the rest of the rugby world just how deadly a finisher he is, Oâ00Driscoll says a sense of satisfaction at the end result was the over-riding emotion after Saturdayâ00s game.
Having fallen to defeat against the same opposition at the same venue two seasons ago courtesy of a last-minute Vincent Clerc try, Oâ00Driscoll was simply delighted to see that the Irish team had learnt from the mistakes made that day.
"France showed that they had plenty of fight,â0 added the 30-year-old.
"It was a big penalty that we got in the last couple of minutes after conceding the second drop goal (from Lionel Beauxis).The way we reacted after that drop goal typified a team that had learnt a lot from two years ago.
"The way we hunted them down, we didn't give it up to them easily. Jamie (Heaslip) got the steal and Rog (Ronan Oâ00Gara) was able to pop the penalty over and give us a little bit of breathing space.
"You play the best teams in the world, they tend to not let you have a free run at it even if things are going reasonably well for you.
"Maybe there was a little bit of knowledge in the team that we had it, when it came down to it, second time around."
O'Driscoll was an Irish tryscorer in Saturday's win over France
Despite the impressive nature of their success, Oâ00Driscoll insists Ireland will not be getting carried away ahead of next weekendâ00s trip to Italy.
"You can't win a Six Nations in the first game but essentially, I suppose, you can lose it.
"We're where we want to be. We've played one game, we've won one game and we're happy with our performance.
"Granted, it's France and they're top class opposition but at the same time let's not get carried away with ourselves.
"We'll enjoy it for a few hours and we'll get on with Italy. It's as simple as that."
After what happened with Umaga and Mealamu in 2005, McGeechan and co will be hoping it remains that simple for Oâ00Driscoll throughout the Six Nations and, if selected, for a full six or seven weeks as a Lion.