Irish hero Ronan O'Gara today insisted he has no intention of retiring from Test rugby after the World Cup here in New Zealand, declaring only “losers” walk away when confronted by a challenge.
The Ireland fly-half suggested in a TV interview after Saturday's stunning 15-6 victory over Australia that his 11-year international career was almost over. “I'm done with Ireland in a few weeks. I've had a great time in this jersey but I want this to be the biggest time,” he told RTE.
Today O'Gara (right) clarified his comments, stating that he was referring to the end of the World Cup and not his own position.
At 34, the oldest member of the squad, O’Gara has lost his place as
first choice fly-half to Leinster's Jonathan Sexton.
“Retirement has crossed my mind plenty of times over the last few years,” said the player who has kicked 1,039 points for Ireland during his 113-cap career
“There are plenty of thoughts in your head when you're disappointed but it's losers who quit when things aren't going so well for them. Retirement hasn't entered my head seriously in that regard. I'm a fighter and I'll keep fighting until the end.
O'Gara is adamant the meaning of his words during the interview were misinterpreted, adding: “On Saturday I was speaking in the context of being done with Ireland in six or seven weeks' time in terms of this World Cup.
“I said I'm done with Ireland in a few weeks and there are different interpretations of that. It was a great night, one of my best nights. I was so proud to be part of the team.”