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Cheika will not rule out recruiting O'Driscoll

Date

James MacSmith

Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll.

Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll. Photo: Getty Images

New Waratahs' coach Michael Cheika has not spoken with Ireland centre Brian O'Driscoll since taking the reins of the Super Rugby franchise a month ago but says NSW remain interested in the services of the British and Irish Lions captain.

The Irish skipper was quoted in the UK press, again talking of his desire to reunite with his former Leinster mentor Cheika in Australia.

O'Driscoll's contract ends next June and he enticingly suggested he could join NSW after the Lions tour, saying "'Cheiks' has my number, so if he wants to get me he can give me a call".

But Cheika said he'd had no contact with O'Driscoll since officially taking over at the Waratahs on September 18.

"Obviously I know Brian very well. It is no secret that he is one of a number of top players over there who would love to come down and play in the Super 15," Cheika told AAP on Wednesday.

"I saw him before I left - I went to say goodbye. But we haven't spoken since.

"I wouldn't want to do that to him or the club. He is in the middle of a season, the Heineken Cup is still on and they are focusing on that.

"It is still my club and it is very close to me and I would not want to disrupt their season. That is Brian saying how he feels about things and what he might like to do."

Cheika's three-year mission to revitalise the ailing Wallabies kicked off on Wednesday when they began their pre-season training.

After a disastrous 2012, which ended in a record eight straight losses, the Heineken Cup-winning coach was upbeat about the season ahead.

The recruitment of South African halfback Sarel Pretorius as a marquee player was one of many black marks in the Waratahs' past season. But Cheika said the bad experience with Pretorius would not influence the Waratahs' thinking and that O'Driscoll's signing remained a possibility.

"It would be a big decision for him to leave Ireland but the thought is there with all the top players they would all love to come down and have a try - there is no doubt about that," he said.

"We don't have a marquee player ... and whether we would go down that road is something we would have to discuss."

AAP

Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
 
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