Johnny Sexton was consoled by his son in an adorable moment after Ireland’s agonising Rugby World Cup defeat to New Zealand, The Sun reports.
The Irish went into the highly-anticipated quarter-final match as favourites, but fell to the wily All Blacks.
Skipper Sexton, 38, announced before the tournament that he would hang up his boots following its conclusion.
Having hoped to sign off in fairytale fashion with World Cup glory, Sexton had to cope with the agony of defeat.
But as he trudged off the pitch at the end of his last game, his heartache was made a little easier to cope with after kind words from his son.
Decked out in an Ireland rugby shirt, son Luca, eight, looked up at his father in admiration.
Television cameras captured the amazing moment, as Luca told Sexton: “You’re still the best, Dad.”
Former England star Ugo Monye saw the clip, tweeting it out accompanied by a heart emoji.
Fans were also left with their hearts warmed by the incident.
One wrote: “Family is everything in moments like this!”
While a second tweeted: “That’s real.”
A third gushed: “Sobbing.”
And another added: “This melts me.”
After the match, an emotional Sexton said: “You’ve got to work hard for fairytale endings and we didn’t get it but that’s life.”
He then added: “I’m very proud of the boys, the nation, we couldn’t have done any more, it’s just fine margins.
“They sucker-punched us on a few tries and that’s what champion teams do. We knew they were a great side and we fell just short unfortunately.
“It’s been amazing. This six weeks has been a dream – this group, these fans and I’m just gutted we couldn’t do it for them.
“We left no stone unturned, we ticked every box, trained the house down, and played pretty well tonight.
“But fair play to the All Blacks.”
New Zealand will play Argentina in the semi-finals after Australian coach Michael Cheika steered his side to a comeback win over Wales.
This article originally appeared in The Sun and was reproduced with permission.