O'Driscoll to stay an emerald gem ?
March 7, 2000

Ireland captain Keith Wood has urged rising star Brian O'Driscoll to ignore the lure of England and continue to ply his trade at home.
The talented Blackrock College centre, who is thought to be a target of London Irish, produced another top-quality performance in Ireland's glorious 60-13 win over Italy on Saturday and is looking increasingly likely to make next year's Lions tour.
Wood, who is committed to returning to Harlequins next season, wants to see O'Driscoll stay in the All Ireland League.
"They way we are going at the present moment, there are an awful lot of good things happening in Irish rugby and players don't have to drift over to England, which may have been the case a few years ago," said Wood.
"It's a decision he'll have to make for himself but I think he's progressing very nicely. "He's got great pace and he's able to make something out of nothing. He's a great asset to have in any side because he takes pressure off the guys inside and outside him."
The Leinster ace, who is being increasingly compared with the legendary Mike Gibson, has been a burgeoning talent for so long now that it is hard to believe he only recently turned 21.
Backs coach Eddie O'Sullivan has no doubt that Ireland have unearthed a gem. "He has incredible vision, incredible acceleration and a lightning change of direction," said O'Sullivan. "He must be one of the most complete players of his age in the world at the moment. If things go smoothly for him and he keeps his feet on the ground, he could become a world-class player."

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