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Sean O'Brien criticises British & Irish Lions coaching setup

22 September 2017

The British and Irish Lions didn't win this year's Test series against the All Blacks because they were worked too hard by coach Warren Gatland, according to flanker Sean O'Brien.

O'Brien repeated his claims on social media when he said: 'To be clear, my views on the Lions tour were honest and genuine with the intention of building on what was a great tour.

The Lions tied the three-Test series 1-1 - going agonisingly close to emulating the 1971 Lions side to beat the All Blacks in a series - after they lost the first game, won the second and drew the final encounter in Auckland.

Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend and Glasgow assistant Jason O'Halloran both turned down invitations to be part of Gatland's staff, and O'Brien - who also toured with the Lions in 2013 - says the best coaches must be recruited in four years' time.

"I think there's a lot of learnings to take from the tour in terms of the coaching set-up as well and from a player's point of view in terms how we dealt with things".

"We did a triple (training) day on the Thursday before the first Test".

"I said all along that I think we had the best coaching team available and I think they proved that in what we achieved in New Zealand", Feehan said on Thursday evening.

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"Looking back there's a bit of frustration we didn't get it right over the whole duration of the tour".

"I don't know if it was people not buying into what he (Howley) was about or whatever else".

With a second-ever series victory in New Zealand up for grabs in the third Test, Gatland made the same mistake, O'Brien contended.

The Ireland and Leinster star, one of the stand-out players of the tour, singled out Rob Howley, the Lions attack coach, for criticism, and hopes the Lions organisation learn from their experiences.

British and Irish Lions flanker Sean O'Brien has criticised the national team's coaching setup following their Test series draw with New Zealand.

"We did almost a similar thing in the last week". That achievement can not be overstated'. Maybe the coaches were panicking about getting the information into us.

"Rob struggled with the group in terms of his attributes of trying to get stuff across, whereas Johnny and Owen drove everything the second week", he said.

Sean O'Brien criticises British & Irish Lions coaching setup