Tana Umaga and Brian O’Driscoll have made up over the controversial spear tackle in the 2005 British & Irish Lions series in New Zealand.
The pair were captaining their respective sides in the first Test of the series in Christchurch when Umaga, with the help of hooker Keven Mealamu, appeared to spear tackle O’Driscoll into the ground, causing the Irish centre to suffer a shoulder injury that ruled him out for the rest of the series.
Neither All Black received retrospective action, angering the Lions camp. O’Driscoll was upset that Umaga did not check-up on him during the night, while Umaga branded O’Driscoll a cry-baby in his autobiography.
On the eve of the Test between the All Blacks and Ireland this weekend, some 13 years after the incident, O’Driscoll and Umaga had a friendly meeting in Dublin, after which they revealed that they had settled their differences a long time ago.
‘We were just chatting about it the other night. I get asked about it all the time,’ O’Driscoll said. ‘We parked it a long time ago. It was one of those things. Was it unfortunate? Yeah. Should you have dealt with it slightly differently? Yeah.
‘You’ve got to move on. You can’t bring those sorts of things through life. Listen, we’re able to have a laugh and take the piss about it now, properly.
‘Actually, to have a get together and chew the fat and properly get to talk and not feel scarred by it is refreshing and, I hope, it’s dead after this.’
Photo: Ross Land/Getty Images