Wales will chase their second successive RBS 6 Nations title tomorrow - and Martyn Williams believes it would represent "a bigger achievement" than winning the Grand Slam last year.
Hopes of another championship clean sweep were lost at the Stade de France three weeks ago, yet Wales can still land a major trophy double this weekend.
Victory of any description will guarantee a third Triple Crown in five seasons.
The title though, is a much tougher proposition after Wales’ fumbling Italian job last Saturday left them requiring a minimum 13-point win against unbeaten tournament leaders Ireland.
“For me, I think it would be a bigger achievement than last year’s Grand Slam,” said Williams, the openside flanker.
“No-one expected us to do that, so we caught teams by surprise.
“This year, teams know what we are about. They have been ready for us, raised their games and targeted us.
“It would be a measure of how far we have come as a side, especially with the points difference we have to make up, if we win the championship.”
Ireland last won a Grand Slam 61 years ago, and Williams added: “As much as you try and put it to the back of your mind, every newspaper they pick up or every television sports programme they watch is going to mention that.
“Sometimes it can be a positive, sometimes a negative. We just have to wait and see how it affects them on Saturday.”
“It will be Grand Slam or bust for them. I remember England picking up the Six Nations trophy after they lost to Ireland in Dublin a few years ago. They were flat and weren’t celebrating.
“I can put myself in Ireland’s shoes because the scenario was similar for us against France last year. We could lose by X number of points and still win the title.
“But that was the last thing on our minds. We went out there with one goal - to get that Grand Slam.
“I am sure, come Saturday, Ireland will be thinking along the same lines.
“It’s a big advantage for us to be at home. We know the pressure is on them, and it will be a test for them how they handle it.
“And, hopefully, we can fulfil our potential, because we haven’t done so yet in this Six Nations.
“Beating them by 13 points is a big ask. We will be going out there to win, not to chase the points. If they come, they come.”
Wales have only recorded such a winning margin against Ireland five times during the last 50 years, and not at all since Eddie Butler captained a 23-9 Cardiff triumph in 1983.
Ireland also boast an impressive record at the Millennium Stadium, beating Wales on three of their four previous visits - 36-6 (2001), 25-24 (2003) and 19-9 (2007).
And Williams believes the emergence of exciting new Irish talent such as full-back Rob Kearney, wing Luke Fitzgerald and flanker Stephen Ferris has strengthened them.
“With the new blood they have got, they’ve become a stronger side,” he claimed.
“It is very difficult to find a weakness in their team when you look at the individuals they have got.
“There is most of the Munster pack, who are the Heineken Cup holders, and they have added players like Ferris and Kearney.
“Ferris is immense. When I’ve played against him when he has been in the Ulster team, he’s been outstanding.
“He is just so dynamic, carries the ball, is a great defender and looks to have a huge work-rate. It looks like he is a really good athlete.”
But Williams also readily acknowledges the immense contribution of Brian O’Driscoll, who is one win away from emulating Ireland’s 1948 Grand Slam skipper Karl Mullen.
“Brian has been outstanding, the stand-out player in this Six Nations,” said Williams.
“Everyone seemed to have written him off, but with or without the ball, he is a superb player.”