/ Six Nations 2015

Declan Kidney says he is not thinking beyond this year's RBS 6 Nations

Updated: Thursday, 24 Jan 2013 10:21 | Comments

Declan Kidney with men's captain Jamie Heaslip and women's captain Fiona Coghlan at yesterday's RBS Six Nations launch in London
Declan Kidney with men's captain Jamie Heaslip and women's captain Fiona Coghlan at yesterday's RBS Six Nations launch in London

Declan Kidney intends enjoying what could be the final RBS 6 Nations of his five-year reign as Ireland coach.

Kidney's contract with the Irish Rugby Football Union expires in the summer and he needs a strong performance in the forthcoming championship to demonstrate that he is the right man to guide the team to the 2015 World Cup.

"A fella told me once that 'if you want to make God laugh, tell him what you're doing tomorrow'," Kidney said.

"My tomorrow is just about getting ready for our opening Six Nations match against Wales. Whatever happens in the future, happens in the future.

"I'm just going to enjoy the now. To have the privilege of coaching Ireland this year is a huge honour for me and one that I take really seriously.

"There haven't been any discussions with the Irish Rugby Football Union, what will happen will happen."

"It was my decision to give Brian (O'Driscoll) a bit of space that he himself didn't want just to get himself right." - Kidney

Kidney has made one of the biggest calls of his Ireland stewardship after selecting Jamie Heaslip as captain ahead of Brian O'Driscoll, who has been the automatic selection since 2004.

O'Driscoll has played only three matches since undergoing ankle surgery in November and will start against Wales in Cardiff on Saturday week.

Part of Kidney's reasoning behind opting for Heaslip was to enable O'Driscoll, who remains an outside contender to lead the Lions tour to Australia this summer, to focus on himself.

"It was my decision to give Brian a bit of space that he himself didn't want just to get himself right," Kidney said.

"Brian reacted to the decision like the man he is and took it in exactly the same way as he plays."

O'Driscoll was disappointed by his demotion, but has assured Heaslip that he has his full support.

"Brian and I tend to be in early for training at Leinster and we spoke about it then. He came straight up to me, shook my hand and told me he's 100% behind me," Heaslip said.

"He told me that if I need any advice or help just to ask, which I have been doing. I've probably been annoying him actually!"

"It's fantastic he's in the squad and that I can call on a player of his experience. The dynamic between us won't change at all."

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