Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Barf as Adidas pay tribute to Brian O'Driscoll

Telegraph Sport: where the debate really gets started

Brian O'Driscoll won his second Six Nations title in his final appearance for his country
Brian O'Driscoll won his second Six Nations title in his final appearance for his country

It's there for you to see yourself, on www.rugbydump.com. Just before Brian O'Driscoll went to play his final test match against France in the Six Nations, the good people of adidas rounded up some stellar names from world rugby to compile what we can only presume they hoped would be 'an emotional tribute.'

Hardened battlers such as Adam Rhys Jones, Paul O'Connell, Richie Gray, Cian Healy and the like, spout lines like 'He played with a courage unsurpassed,' 'No one will ever fill your boots', read out by the lads with a straight face.

'Thank you Brian', they all say, one after the other at the conclusion of the clip.

And then three messages come on screen, one after the other in fashionable lowercase; 'o'driscoll is all in,' 'adidas is all in,' '#thankyoubrian.' Barf.

It strays into saccharine territory, almost like a video tribute for a requiem mass. It aims to strike a chord somewhere between classy and respectful, but fails completely.

This is the kind of crass nonsense we get when the corporate world makes a cack-handed attempt at trying to capture the emotion of the sporting public.

They get athletes into a room, cover them with make-up scratches and get them to fake it for a while. Of course, the reward for doing so is cash, pots of it.

It's been four years since Tiger Woods faced the glare of the world, and apologised to his corporate partners for cheating on his wife, just before a cringingly-staged hug with his mother.

But still, we'd lap up everything, wouldn't we?

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