In the week before Christmas the extended Ireland squad got together for a short training camp in Dublin and Ronan O’Gara, speaking at the RTE Sports Awards last Sunday, gave an insight into how things are shaping up for the fast-approaching RBS 6 Nations Championship.
Record-breaking out-half Ronan O’Gara said: “The camp was really positive and encouraging. There’s a bond really developing now in the Irish team that might have been missing for the last twelve months.
“We’re looking forward to the Six Nations big time. I think we’ve a point to prove and this could be a good start.
“The Six Nations is a massive goal for us. There’s a lot of fellas hurting in an Irish jersey and last week we decided we need to improve things and I think we will improve things.
“It’s a time to be enjoyed and maybe it became a bit stale. Right now fellas are refocused and re-energised and we’re looking forward to the championship.”
Second row Donncha O’Callaghan knows Ireland have to take whatever momentum was built up during the November Tests into the new year.
“This team has to perform from every game on and Deccie (Declan Kidney) is the right man to lead us,” he said.
“We’re going in the right direction, we’re building momentum.
“We can’t go out after the performance against Argentina and not back it up. Hopefully we’ll back it up in the Six Nations.”
Ireland open the 2009 tournament with a mouth-watering clash with France at Croke Park on Saturday, February 7 (kick-off 5pm).