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18th May 2017

Kevin McLaughlin recalls frankly terrifying experience of taking John Hayes’ seat on the Ireland team bus

Never happened again...

Patrick McCarry

If he had’ve known, surely he would have sat somewhere else.

Stephen Ferris and Kevin McLaughlin joined host Andy McGeady and myself on The Hard Yards this week and had us in stitches with great tales from their days with Ireland.

Former Leinster and Ireland flanker Kevin McLaughlin recalled a fantastic, and frankly terrifying, yarn from early in his international career.

McLaughlin began:

“I remember the very first time I got onto the coach to go to a training session, and I just plonked myself down. I wasn’t at the back I was about three seats from the back of the bus, and everyone started giving me funny stares.

“I was like what is everyone looking at like, ‘What have I done wrong here?’

“I saw a few people sniggering or whatever and then saw John Hayes marching down the bus. He’s got this filthy look like a bull on his face.

“That’s my seat!”

“Sorry Mr. Hayes,” I said as I legged it to the front of the bus.”

McLaughlin eventually got settled in and he has nothing but praise for Paul O’Connell in helping him with the process but he insists he’ll never forget that bad first impression with ‘The Bull’ himself. And he never made the same mistake again.

Ireland’s new caps, pissing off John Hayes, Paul O’Connell’s mischief, Ulster’s woes, a Guinness PRO12 semi-finals preview and more.

Here’s a complete run-down of this week’s pod:

1:00 – Stephen Ferris on his first time in Irish camp
3:30 – Kev McLaughlin remembers pissing off John Hayes on his first day in Irish camp
5:20 – Fez on his first meeting with Brian O’Driscoll
7:10 – The boys try to remember the first player they roomed with in Irish camp
8:25 – An absolute classic about Justin Fitzpatrick
10:00 – A great story about Paul O’Connell’s roguery
12:55 – Kev on the pressure of trying to establish himself in the Ireland squad
16:00 – The guys talk about Rory Scannell’s potential
18:55 – Who are the new leaders emerging in Irish rugby?
20:30 – The guys talk about Jacob Stockdale’s inclusion ahead of Andrew Trimble and Craig Gilroy
25:00 – What does the Ireland squad tell us about late Lions call-ups?
27:37 – What has gone wrong at Ulster this season?
31:00 – Why have Ulster stopped producing good young players?
32:25 – Kev on how Saracens coach Mark McCall can help Ulster
34:20 – Fez on the lack of local players in the Ulster setup
41:28 – What Jono Gibbes will bring to the Ulster setup next season
44:00 – A Guinness PRO12 semi final preview w/ Hayley O’Connor from Ladbrokes
49:00 – A look at Connacht’s Champions Cup playoff semi final with Northampton

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