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Video - O'Driscoll takes part in the infamous England 7s 'Death Zone' session

By RugbyPass
Brian O'Driscoll takes on an England 7s training session

With the HSBC Sevens World Series set to kick off this weekend, former Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll took to the pitch once again – this time for a gruelling training session with the England Sevens squad.

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As an ambassador for the HSBC World Rugby Sevens, we are quite used to seeing O’Driscoll in front of the camera giving us his views and expert analysis, yet this time he decided to try out an infamous session known as the ‘Death Zone’.

The term ‘Death Zone’ comes from mountain climbing and describes the altitude at which there is not enough oxygen for humans to breathe.

Despite retiring in 2014, O’Driscoll says he wanted to take up the challenge to see if he could get his brain to “go to a place I used to be able to go” after leaving the game. In a raw and emotional video, we see him talk about the mental strength the game takes and describing how he doesn’t know many fifteen players who would be ‘capable’ of it.

“These players are different than most, and that’s what allows them to get into that horribly dark place”.

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William 1 hours ago
All Blacks vs England takeaways: Richie Who? Time for Cortez

Correct analysis of Perofeta’s bungling of the try opportunity Ben. Never ‘fixed’ Steward as he came across in defence and passed too early. Steward didn’t have to break his stride and simply moved on to pressure Telea. Never scanned the easier option of passing to the two supporting players on the inside. Beauden Barrett showed how it is done when he put Telea in for his try. Another point from the game is that the rush defence is hard to maintain as the number of phases increases. From scrums the defensive line only contains backs who all have roughly the same pace. Once forwards are involved, the defence has players with variable speeds often leading to a jagged line. It also tends to lose pace overall giving the attack more time and space. Beauden Barrett’s break to set up Telea’s try came because Baxter went in to tackle McKenzie and Steward went out to cover Telea. Barrett has a massive hole to run through, then commits Steward by passing as late as possible and Telea scores untouched. Another comment I would make is that Ben Earl is a good player and generally an excellent defender but he made three significant misses in the series, two of which led to All Black tries. Got stepped by Perofeta in Dunedin for Savea’s try, missed McKenzie in Auckland leading to what should have been a certain try being set up by Perofeta and was one of the tacklers who couldn’t stop Savea in the leadup to Telea’s first try. Perhaps he should contact Owen Farrell to pick up a few tips from ‘tackle school’.

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