Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 22 November 2014

Rivalry will help raise my game: O’Gara

Ronan O'Gara believes the competition for his Ireland No 10 jersey will bring the best out of him ahead of next month's international series.

Ireland begin their season against Australia on November 14 and the form of Jonathan Sexton has led to much speculation that national coach Declan Kidney will opt for the Leinster man ahead of O'Gara next month.

“They're more than worthy comments,” said O'Gara.

“I've started the season slowly and you know there's going to be huge competition for places and if you want to play for Ireland you have got to be playing well and that's been the case for 10 years.

“An awful lot can happen in a week though, and if you have a good track record that will stand to you too. There will be huge competition but that's what I'll enjoy and there will be opportunities to improve.

“I've played five games this season, the Northampton game was the key game and I played well in that game. I think you can over-hype all these things too, the general game is going well, the goal-kicking isn't going well but I don't think there's any need to be going hysterical.”

Munster and O'Gara have been shipping some heavy criticism but, while acknowledging that the side are not playing well, the out-half is confident the province can rediscover their form.

“It's not doom and gloom. We have to improve a huge amount in December but that can happen and we're positive about that happening.”

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