The Official Online RBS 6 Nations Store is open. The store has everything you need to get behind your team during the RBS 6 Nations, plus the store is now fully stocked with a much wider range of rugby merchandise.
“Leigh Halfpenny is playing well at the moment and has taken his chance well,” said Byrne, whose Clermont Auvergne side are flying high in the French Top 14 and Heineken Cup this season.
“There are other younger players coming through as well, but I am just focused on trying to get in the match-day 23. It is one step at a time. But I would be disappointed if I am not involved against Ireland and I am not here to make up the numbers.”
At his peak in 2009, Byrne took to the field for the British & Irish Lions in the first test against South Africa in Durban.
And despite being one of the oldest players in the squad Byrne, who has ten international tries to his name, believes he still has plenty to offer. Indeed, the 2008 RBS 6 Nations Grand Slam winner is convinced his move to France has only made him a better player.
“People may have wondered whether the World Cup was the end for me, but it is just great to get another call-up,” Byrne told Wales Online.
“I was playing well in France and it is nice that has been recognised and I have been picked on form. It is strange being the oldest and I have been teased about that. But I don’t feel that old.
“Looking around you see a lot guys in their early 20s, but Matthew Rees, who is the same age as me, is still here which is reassuring. The move to Clermont has developed my game and it always helps when you are playing alongside world-class players.
“I am enjoying learning from the best with players who would walk into any international team. It is not quite an armchair ride, but it does help your game.”