St Patricks Day: Five best Irish players of the professional era

3. Johnny Sexton

The main man behind Ireland’s international success in recent seasons and Leinster’s stranglehold on the European Champions Cup and Guinness PRO14 double in 2018.

Johnny Sexton of Ireland celebrates after the six Nations Championship match, between England and Ireland at Twickenham Stadium, London , UK, on the 17th March 2017. (Photo:Dean Lancaster/PPAUK)

2. Paul O’Connell

Munster fans will tell you that Superman wears Paul O’Connell pyjamas! The Irish second row was certainly blessed with special rugby powers having been one of the world’s leading tight forwards for more than a decade. A three-times Lions who captained the tour of South Africa in 2009.


1. Brian O’Driscoll

One of the most feared players in the game, O’Driscoll was also one of the most consistent. His 141 Test caps, including eight for the Lions, place him second on the all-time list behind Richie McCaw.

Ireland’s record try scorer with 46 touchdowns, O’Driscoll also led his country more times than any other player and his brilliant defensive qualities and dazzling attacking skills made him a threat all over the field.

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