I was extremely surprised by the quality of the French team's performance against the Italians on Saturday, especially after many months of doubts, triggered by poor displays during the Autumn Test-matches.
In Rome I found France very solid on the basics of the game. We performed excellently in first half with a strong scrum and pack.
Italy then made mistakes despite taking a lot of balls and we took advantage of them. We relaxed gradually and we recaptured our reflexes. This was a match full of events with Italy never giving up on opportunities to unsettle us.
Now I would say that competition within the French players is back on track for good and that we are also regained an excellent level. This makes me very confident for the remainder of the tournament.
On Sunday we travel to Dublin to face a very strong and complete Ireland side. It will not be easy to win on their ground.
Their front row is impressive and we will have to try to unsettle and surprise them in the scrum. We will have to display the same solid game as against Italy. We will have to remain solid, faithful to our convictions and display a great defence.
Ireland are the favourites to win the 2007 Six Nations but if we beat them we will have made a convincing step towards our objectives that are selecting the best possible team and finding the best possible game tactics ahead of the World Cup.