Ireland star makes a vow after ban
SIX NATIONS SPOTLIGHT: Flank Peter O’Mahony says his three-game ban following a red card in the opening Six Nations match against Wales will not change his physical approach as Ireland prepare for Saturday’s clash with England.
The 31-year-old is available again for Ireland’s final game of their campaign, which will be CJ Stander’s last Test in a green jersey.
Stander, six months younger than O’Mahony, this week announced his retirement at the end of the season for family reasons.
O’Mahony, who recently signed a new two-year deal with Ireland, was sent off in Cardiff last month for a brutal head-high hit on prop Tomas Francis as Wales ran out 21-16 victors.
The Welsh are now on the brink of a Grand Slam while the Irish battle it out with England to restore pride after a mixed campaign for both teams.
O’Mahony acknowledges he was at fault in Ireland’s tournament opener but said he would not change his approach.
“It’s a very physical game,” he said. “I’ve always played hard. I’ve always played fairly, in my opinion.
“I, 100 percent, was wrong in what happened in the incident but the guys know better than anyone, my teammates know that I was acting on the best intent for the team that day and, unfortunately, that’s what happened.
“I don’t think they will be looking for me to put in any different performance than I give any other week when I play for Ireland. That would be unjust to the jersey.”
O’Mahony said he regretted there would be no fans at Lansdowne Road for Stander’s final match for Ireland, due to coronavirus protocols.
“I know his [Stander’s] teammates would like to play well for him and give him a good send-off and that will be the most important to him,” he added.
“We’ve learned some lessons and hopefully we can put in a better performance against them on Saturday.” 👊🟢@JohnnySexton looks ahead to a Super Saturday showdown against England: https://t.co/lNWif5EVjh#ShoulderToShoulder #GuinnessSixNations #IREvENG pic.twitter.com/0IgNJ1qoKHADVERTISEMENT
— Irish Rugby (@IrishRugby) March 17, 2021