Alan Quinlan joins Keith Wood for Wednesday Night Rugby on Off The Ball to relive some highs and lows of their times in the green of Ireland and the red of Munster.
The pair's careers didn't overlap for too long but the duo shared the pain the 2000 Heineken Cup final. Munster lost 9-8 to a Pat Lam inspired Northampton side at Twickenham.
Keith still can't get over losing the Heineken Cup Final to Pat in 2000! pic.twitter.com/qIvtykFCCV
— RaboInsider (@RaboInsider) August 27, 2013
The day is remembered for all the wrong reasons for one Munster player, in particular, the young Ronan O'Gara.
The BBC match report said: "Munster scored the only try of the match - but in a tale of two boots, Northampton secured a historic victory thanks to the ever-prolific Paul Grayson.
"He scored three penalty goals - while his counterpart, the young Ronan O'Gara missed four kicks out of four, including one just a minute from time."
The BBC is a pretty measured source, Youtube is not so measured: "Ronan O'Gara chokes in the 2000 Heineken Cup final vs Northampton" is the first video that pops up for a search of "2000 Heineken Cup Final."
The video is less than two minutes long, a cruel supercut of missed placekicks, missed touch finders, an interception, and a penalty concession.
In an unbelievable turn of events, the Youtube video doesn't tell the full story - just ask Graeme Souness about "George Weah's cousin."
Munster had many opportunities on the day but could not make them count, and not to absolve O'Gara, who had a howler, but there were no early gimmes off the kicking tee. ROG was only 23 at the time, having made his international debut months earlier.
The decision making in the team looked off, the first penalty was from almost half-way, the conversion attempt was near the touchline. In a team full of veterans, the young out-half wasn't getting too much assistance from the leaders.
In a chat with the Jarlath Regan Irishman Abroad Podcast series, O'Gara revealed why the team wasn't at the right pitch for the game.
Munster were emotionally spent from the team meeting the night before, accord to the out-half.
"We lost the 200 Heineken Cup final because the night before we had a team meeting where we didn't control our emotions.
"We just all sat around in a room and we expressed what it meant to play for Munster and what tomorrow's going to be like.
"There were 40 adults and 38 of them balling crying. It was one of those really, really powerful moments.
"That's experience, we weren't experienced for big occasions. We didn't know how to handle ourselves.
"We were drained."
Keith Wood and Alan Quinlan were both at that meeting.
Quinlan went on to reach the European promised land, eventually. Wood didn't, having finished his club career with Harlequins and his Ireland career after the 2003 Rugby World Cup.
Everyone’s in the Team Of Us.
Vodafone. The Official Sponsor of the Irish Rugby Team.