Crusaders a 'mythical' team says O'Gara
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Ireland legend Ronan O'Gara said he noticed the Crusaders from a young age, admiring their culture and style play.
It was a big surprise when O'Gara announced last year that he would be leaving French club Racing Metro to join the Crusaders' coaching staff, but for the former flyhalf, it was an opportunity he could not refuse.
"Ever since I was a kid, it's been kind of a mythical team for me here," O'Gara told reporters at a Crusaders training session on Thursday.
"When I started playing at Munster, we looked a lot at the Crusaders in terms of their values and their culture."
O'Gara said he had discussions with former Crusaders and now Racing Metro players Daniel Carter and Casey Laulala before he made what he said wasn't a difficult decision.
"For the Crusaders? No. For anything else? Yeah, because there's a family side to it and the kids are fluent in French," O'Gara said.
"I have to be selfish in what I want from life and there's also [five] kids and a wife [Jessica] that you have to take account of. What was best for them would have been to cement the French language, but thankfully my wife backed me and said 'yeah, I'll come with you, let's go!'."
O'Gara said he is looking to gain experience around the world before he becomes a head coach one day.
He will be mentoring the flyhalves at the Crusaders and will oversee the team's kicking game.
He will also take care of their counter-attacking game and assist head coach Scott Robertson with defence.
"I think at the minute, let's see how it goes for the first three months and then let's see how it goes for the next three months. What will be will be," O'Gara said.