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Warren Gatland hits back at sniping from his Lions flanker Sean O’Brien

• Ireland forward had claimed a whitewash of the All Blacks was feasible
• Wales coach rules out third spell in charge of Lions on 2021 tour

Warren Gatland said he was hurt by Sean O’Brien’s public criticism of the coaching on the summer British & Irish Lions tour to New Zealand and revealed he would not be seeking the head coach’s position for a third successive trip in 2021 because there were times this year when he “hated” aspects of the job.

Gatland was speaking for the first time since O’Brien made his remarks in a radio interview a month ago. The Ireland flanker, who started all three Tests, claimed a more attacking gameplan from the start would have delivered a 3-0 series whitewash, that the backs coach, Rob Howley, struggled to get his message across and that in future the Lions should have the best coaches.

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