Dublin waved farewell to British & Irish Lions legend Brian O’Driscoll on Saturday but the real send-off comes this weekend, according to Ireland teammate Eoin Reddan.
O’Driscoll made a world record 140th Test appearance in Ireland’s 46-7 thrashing of Italy at the Aviva Stadium, picking up the man of the match award in the process.
Eight of those appearances have come in Lions red, spread across four separate tours, and O’Driscoll is set to retire from international rugby with 141 caps after facing France next weekend.
Ireland have won in Paris just once in 42 years but scrum-half Eoin Reddan, who replaced O’Driscoll’s Lions teammate Conor Murray on Saturday, is hoping to buck the trend and give the legendary centre a memorable finale.
"Brian's story for the squad will start at the final whistle next week if we do it," said Reddan. "That's got to be the biggest way to pay respect to his career.
"I'm pretty sure if we didn't deliver next week Brian would probably have two very clear memories of the last two weeks of his Irish career, one would be the great day today and the other would be a very bad day next week. And we don't want that to happen.
"Next week is the chance for us, as players, to pay our respects. And we won't be standing back applauding people."