Ireland captain Rory Best said the 26-14 win over France on Sunday was just the way he would have wanted his potential last Six Nations Championship home game to go.
Twenty-four hours earlier, Best admitted he was fairly certain the World Cup later this year would be the end for him after 116 appearances for Ireland.
Yesterday he led the team by example, scoring the opening try in the second minute to set the tone.
Johnny Sexton, Jack Conan and Keith Earls also crossed to give Ireland their third straight win in this Six Nations Championship and keep them in the mix for next weekend’s title tilt.
On his potential last Six Nations home game, Best who had his three children with him on the pitch after the game, said: “It wasn’t something I’d thought much about until the last maybe 24 hours.
“It’s strange to think it’s the last time you’ll hop on a team bus here to go to a Six Nations game.
“But it’s exactly how you’d want it to go. The intensity we played with in the first half, it was great to be a part of.”
Two late tries conceded did not take the gloss off the French win and Best did admit that the previous performances in the championship were sub-par but felt yesterday, where they dominated every facet of the first hour, was a reminder of how good they can be when playing to their strengths.
He said: “We’ve been as frustrated as anyone with some of the stuff in the first three games. A couple of the things we talked about was just taking individual responsibility.
“There’s been a lot of criticism aimed at some of our players but we are at our best whenever we attack.”