LISTEN: Brian O'Driscoll talks to Jarlath Regan about Conor McGregor's total lack of self-doubt 7 years ago

LISTEN: Brian O'Driscoll talks to Jarlath Regan about Conor McGregor's total lack of self-doubt

"Fair play to him if he believes everything he's saying."

One of the JOE team's favourite podcasts, Irishman Abroad presented by Jarlath Regan, has a belter of an episode ready to drop this Sunday morning.


BOD and Regan

The Irish comedian has an in-depth interview with Irish rugby legend, Brian O'Driscoll and Jarlath has been kind enough to send us some of nuggets in advance.

Here's BOD's take on sportsmen who say they have no self-doubt; when Regan offers Conor McGregor as an example, O'Driscoll's analysis is fascinating:

Some more selected quotes of what looks to be an incredibly juicy interview:
Reflects on the shyness he had to overcome to be a leader and broadcaster:
"The thought of speaking in front of crowds would have petrified me."
On his crisis of confidence in 2008:
"I was in a bad dip of form, I went through some personal disappointments. I had some hard times in 2008 with the death of my friend and there was an incident in New York where I got wrongfully arrested. And all these culminated and effected my form. I needed a neutral voice. For want of a better expression, it was almost counseling to try and change my mindset a small bit and get myself thinking in positive manner about how i get the best out of myself again."
His sports psychologist recommended he watch videos of himself on Youtube to get his confidence back:
"I own about three hundred thousand hits on a four hundred thousand hit montage video. People might think "Wow, a lot of people have watched this!" It's actually just me watching them over and over again!!...I did look back on them to remind myself of what I was capable of and the skill set that was always there."
"Any sportsman who says he lives without doubt isn't even deluded, he's a liar. That's all sports people. Some people might trick themselves into thinking they're more confident than they are but it's impossible to maintain."
When then asked if Conor McGregor was an exception to that rule he said,
"I think it's still early on in Conor McGregor's career. I don't know how long a UFC career will go but if you go for 10 or 15 years, as the likes of Messi, Ronan O'Gara or I have done, I think over that period of time it is very very hard to maintain a really high standard of lack of self-doubt. It's different in the fight game where it has to be all bravado. You have to be all front.
"No one knows the true inner thoughts of Conor McGregor. Only Conor McGregor does. I'd say John Kavanagh his coach, doesn't even know that. And fair play to him if he believes everything that he's saying. But I am sure at times, in his quieter moments, everyone has that element of self doubt as to whether they're able to still do it. And it tends to come in the later years of your career when the body starts to ale slightly on you."
Part of him thinks he could have played in the last World Cup.
"I got that, "Surely you could make it to another World Cup" when I retired. "Surely you can?" And I thought to myself, you know what i probably could get there but I'm battling in my head about not being able to do things as quickly. The brain is still operating but the body won't react. And trust me, I would love to have gotten to that World Cup but I knew in that final year I was far off my best."
A prominent radio DJ annoyed him greatly in 2009 and he hasn't forgotten it. Much has been made of the the betrayal he felt when certain Leinster supporters defected to Munster during 2009 and the term "Lunsters" was coined. When asked directly whether he knew any individuals personally who did this he admitted,
"Yeah, I did, yeah. I'll keep him nameless but he was a radio DJ that was from Kildare. I'm sure it won't be too difficult to work out, but I remember hearing that he was going to support Munster in 2009 because they had more spirit and more passion, even though he was from Kildare.
"Whatever about the guys that were on the border, but Kildare is not that close to Munster. So that really annoyed me. That was a great annoyance to me. There was someone else. Another TV personality/radio DJ from Meath who also said likewise....It annoyed me because they took the easy option."
On the fall out with Paul Kimmage who signed on to ghost write is autobiography:
"We obviously did a couple of years. 3 years of work together, we did a lot of interviews. So I didn't know when I was going to retire and I wanted to make sure that it only came out when I had retired. An ultimatum was put to me regarding doing an interview. I had promised an interview, one of my last ones during my final 6 nations, to a journalist who had been very good to me and pretty understanding and I felt that as though I owed it to him.
"I'd gotten a request from Paul to do a piece with him instead for his column and I said that I'd promised it to someone else and I couldn't renege on that. And then, pretty much, an ultimatum was put to me that "I don't think I could continue working if that journalist was chosen ahead of me." And that was it. I'm not a good ultimatum guy."
Brian O'Driscoll quotes from his up-coming Irishman Abroad interview.
Released this Sunday on iTunes and Soundcloud. Jarlath Regan's Irishman Abroad podcast is Ireland's number 1 independent podcast.
It has featured long form interviews with more than 120 Irish stars including Hozier, Dylan Moran, Chris O'Dowd, Lisa Hannigan, Sharon Horgan, Graham Linehan, AP McCoy and many more.