#2. Brian O’Driscoll – 2005
On June 25th, 2005 Lions captain O’Driscoll was the victim of a spear tackle 41 seconds into the first Test against New Zealand in the Jade stadium in Christchurch.
The Irish centre suffered a tour ending shoulder injury that required surgery while the perpetrators, All Blacks captain Tana Umaga and hooker Keven Mealamu, received no official censure, at the time or subsequently, for their actions.
The incident’s ripple effect lapped at interviews for more than a decade, initially polluted by rancour.
It was a topic that niggled at and relentlessly pursued O’Driscoll and Umaga through the remainder of their playing careers and beyond.