Brian O’Driscoll ranked as the second greatest midfielder of all time by Jones and Barnes

Brian O’Driscoll ranked as the second greatest midfielder of all time by Jones and Barnes

Former Ireland and Lions captain Brian O’Driscoll has been ranked as the second-best midfielder of all time by The Times columnists Stephen Jones and Stuart Barnes.

In their latest edition of The Tens series, Jones and Barnes ranked their 10 best midfielders of all time with Wallabies legend Tim Horan taking top spot for Barnes and England's Jeremy Guscott claiming the top spot for Jones.


The pair did however agree that  O’Driscoll was the second best midfielder of all time. 

Jones hailed O'Driscoll's work rate as well as his incredible consistency: "His work-rate alone was phenomenal, he could pounce for tries either on wide arcs or even driving up the middle of rucks. A talisman of major proportions for Irish rugby and for Ireland, possibly at the peak on the 2001 Lions tour but incredibly consistent way past his 100th cap. The competitor’s competitor." he wrote. 

Meanwhile, Barnes pointed out his hat-trick against France as a sign of things to come while saying his partnership with Gordon D’Arcy was the best breakdown combination to come out of the centre: "The hat-trick of tries against France in Paris when Ireland were not supposed to win there was the shape of things to come. Slightly stooped, searching for the gap, he was a sensation from the earliest of his days. His partnership with Gordon D’Arcy was the best breakdown combination to come out of the centre, while Joe Schmidt had him working on his passing and kicking skills until he was as good as they could be. Oh, and he knew how and when to score a crucial try." he wrote.


Barnes selected the likes of Ma’a Nonu, Yannick Jauzion, Jeremy Guscott,  Philippe Sella, Frank Bunce, Danie Gerber, Conrad Smith and  Mike Gibson in his top 10. While Jones picked  Frank Bunce, Philippe Sella,Danie Gerber, Jonathan Davies, Keith Jarrett, Seru Rabeni, Jim Renwick, Will Greenwood and Gavin Henson in his top 10.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE


STEPHEN JONES' LIST:

1 Jeremy Guscott

2 Brian O’Driscoll

3 Frank Bunce

4 Philippe Sella

5 Danie Gerber

6 Jonathan Davies

7 Keith Jarrett

8 Seru Rabeni

9 Jim Renwick

10= Will Greenwood

10= Gavin Henson

STUART BARNES' LIST:

1 Tim Horan

2 Brian O’Driscoll

3 Ma’a Nonu

4 Yannick Jauzion

5 Jeremy Guscott

6 Philippe Sella

7 Frank Bunce

8 Danie Gerber

9 Conrad Smith

10 Mike Gibson

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