The tour comes to an end today and it ends in victory for Ireland – a historic first Test series win in Argentina.
Day 14 – ‘Job Done’
The match itself may not have been pretty but if you can’t celebrate and enjoy a win then you’re in the wrong game.
It has been a hard tour in many ways – lots of travel, difficult pitches, hugely physical opposition – but there are always positives to take and lessons to learn.
We have capped six new players – Rodney Ah You, James Cronin, Rob Herring, Robbie Diack, Noel Reid and Kieran Marmion.
They have gained exposure to the highest level of the game and the coaches have gained a greater understanding of them as players.
We have put more building blocks in place on the road to next season and to the Rugby World Cup.
The day itself is a long one with a trip back to Buenos Aires straight after the game and a meal and the cap presentations for the new lads.
Every squad is different, every tour unique. For two weeks you are in a privileged environment where everyone is committed to one goal – winning.
But every squad must break up and so the dinner serves as a farewell for ‘Plum’ – forwards coach John Plumtree – as he leaves the coaching team to take up a new role in New Zealand.
John, the other coaches and players can look back with satisfaction at a job well done this season – Six Nations champions and summer tour success. In the words of IRFU President Pat Fitzgerald, ‘a great season for Irish rugby’.
After that it is like the last day of school. The bell goes and you’re on holidays…..until the focus switches to November and the GUINNESS Series.
For now it is job done.