I was very happy to play, it is such an honor to wear that jersey. I really, honestly enjoyed myself out there, and it's the main thing about rugby. Obviously, there was some frustration regarding the collective performance. But despite this frustration, despite the poor performance, we won! We are working hard during the week, it needs to pay off.
What are your expectations for this next game?
First I want to win. We have been criticized after our last performance, but beating Ireland should set the record straight. I'm really happy to play a second game in a row, but I need to perform again, because things can go very fast for me, one way or the other. Now it's up to me to prove the coaches right, and show that their trust in me was not misplaced.
How hard is it to come into a struggling squad? Is it more pressure or do you feel like there is nothing to lose for you?
I don't like to think about that kind of things too much. All I wanted to do is prove my worth and bring something new to the squad. After two years, it wasn't my place to speak out or anything.
Is it difficult for you to adapt to an ever-changing composition in the third row?
As far as I'm concerned, it is something I am used to in club rugby, since Clermont has many different configurations in the third row, many different profiles. I think we did a good job preparing for this last game, and I'm looking forward to it. My job stays more or less the same anyway, I need to stick to the ball as often as I can and be the first support.
Can you already see the Joe Schmidt's influence over Ireland?
I have worked with him in Clermont, he is an amazing coach. And yes, there are things here and there in the Irish game that remind me of his time with us. Maybe there are a few things we could use...
What is you view on Ireland's third row?
It is one of their great strengths. I know O'Mahony pretty well. We're the same age, and we were both captains of our teams when we played against each other in under 20. I'm sincerely happy to meet him on the field again, because it will be a formidable challenge. They have amazing loose forwards, but we are not too bad ourselves.