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BRIAN'S PAIN AT BROKEN PROMISE; RUGBY WORLD CUP POOL D CRUNCH: IRELAND 3 FRANCE 25.

BRIAN O'Driscoll last night admitted that Ireland failed to live up to their promise to their fans as they effectively crashed out of the World Cup.

In the build-up to their third Pool D game, the players moved to dampen concerns in the wake of the awful displays against Namibia and Georgia.

Ireland insisted that they had been keeping plenty in reserve for the big clash with France - but in the wake of their latest disappointing performance O'Driscoll put his hands up.

"Credit to them, we didn't up our performance enough like we said we would," he admitted.

"If you don't play out of your skin against France then you come off second best.

"They had a huge amount to play for, just like ourselves. In fairness to them they made it very difficult for us. Our ill discipline let us down and they kept the scoreboard ticking over.

"And then when they scored their try it pretty much killed the tie.

"We need a massive result against Argentina.

"I don't know what the permutations and combinations are - whether we need five points and deny them a bonus point but we'll think about that tomorrow."

Head coach Eddie O'Sullivan insisted the side would come back strong against Argentina before declining to criticise the suspect performance of referee Chris White.

He said: "Maybe we were too fired up and maybe we crossed the line disciplinewise but there were some very tough calls that went against us out there.

"I think if we had have stayed in the game in the second half we could have been in with a shout but once France got the cushion they needed that really killed us.

"I don't want to criticise the referee because that will only lead to more trouble."

CAPTION(S):

ADMISSION: O'Driscoll; REFEREE: Chris White
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 22, 2007
Words:303
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