This really is a sad day for Irish rugby.
With the news that, due to a torn hamstring, Irish rugby legend and Ireland captain Paul O'Connell is out of the Rugby World Cup and has played his final international game, there's a lot of sadness in the rugby world and beyond today.
— Irish Rugby (@IrishRugby) October 13, 2015
Brian O'Driscoll summed it up best and we wholeheartedly agree.
This is so wrong on many levels. One of the greatest leaders & players of them all. Inspirational. https://t.co/8blR5e2tJp
— Brian O'Driscoll (@BrianODriscoll) October 13, 2015
— Munster Rugby (@Munsterrugby) October 13, 2015
— Ronan O Gara (@RonanOGara10) October 13, 2015
— UL (@UL) October 13, 2015
The word 'Legend' is bandied around a lot, but in this instance, it's nearly not enough. He ran through a rhino for fux ache! @Paul_OConnell
— Gavin Coffey (@GavinCoffey) October 13, 2015
— Ken Doherty Official (@kendoherty1997) October 13, 2015
Is there any space left in #budget16 for genetic research to breed a replacement Paul O'Connell?
— Gavan Reilly (@gavreilly) October 13, 2015
Losing Paul O' Connell is worse than losing Gandalf. #IRLvFRA
— Colm Tobin (@colmtobin) October 11, 2015
— RTÉ Rugby (@RTErugby) October 13, 2015
Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Rob Kearney yesterday spoke about O'Connell's injury and his own reaction, as well as O'Connell's which is a testament to the nature of the man.
"It is difficult, I felt awful for him but it was great to see the sheer delight on his face after game in terms of what we'd achieved as opposed to feeling sorry for himself. It was brilliant to see and a great sign of the man that he was able to put his own woes behind him and think of the team's achievement first."
O'Connell will undergo surgery this week, according to a statement from the IRFU. Fingers crossed he'll be back on his feet in time to watch Ireland continue on in the tournament.