"It was great coming back into the side. You never take it for granted playing in an Irish jersey and from my point of view, it was disappointing we missed out on the French game.
"It was a surreal experience coming back into the side and it was an unbelievable feeling for me. The day you take it for granted, I think you're finished. I cherished every minute of the build-up, and going out in the warm-up, and for the whole game, it really meant so much to me."
ON HIS HAND INJURY:
"Yeah, the hand injury did hurt me earlier in the week, but once I came through the fitness test on Thursday, I was full of confidence. Going out for the warm-up in that arena was fantastic."
ON HIS DUEL WITH ISAAC BOSS FOR THE SCRUM HALF SPOT:
"Isaac did play well (against France), he's a guy who has always played well when he has come in.
"It was difficult (for him), at times, in the French game. At ruck time, it wasn't as easy as the England match when the forwards played really well. So, I had a good platform. We were going forward, and, consequently, it was easy for a scrum half.
"Everyone will admit that competition has grown (in the squad), and that it's good for the team. When I go out onto the pitch, I'm determined to hold on to my place - you take nothing for granted."
ON THE PLAYERS' HIGH STANDARDS:
"You set yourself a mark, a target, and if you don't reach that - you can't look at yourself in a mirror after a game. Ultimately, that's what you play rugby for.
"Because of the way things have gone for us over the past couple of years, and the standards we have set for ourselves, the side was disappointed with the way things went against France.
"A few years ago, if we had come close to beating the French, we might have been satisfied.
"Now, we've got to be critical and harsh on ourselves. If you cannot put in a performance that matches what you did in the past, you have to analyse that and look at yourself.
â00And that's what we did (against England). We knew that one loss didn't make us a bad team. We knew there were a lot of good things there but we had to fine-tune the last four or five percent that would make the difference in big games like Saturday's one.
"Guys did the extra analysis themselves as well. I think everyone was fired up for it and there was a bit of backlash from the French game."