Iestyn Harris knows Wales are still only in a second division, despite their roaring success against the hapless Scots. The Wales star was pleased with his part in the 23-10 victory at the Millennium Stadium at the weekend and says there is a real buzz within the team. The quiet second half slump against Scotland made sure Steve Hansen's men are keeping their feet firmly on the ground.
"We know we're still a long way off the leading teams in the Championship and Ireland will be a significant test," said Harris. "I've lost two out of two in Dublin. Ireland are a quality side, Brian O'Driscoll is likely to be back in the reckoning and they'll be looking for a big home win.
"We're all really excited about what we feel we're on the brink of achieving. We've come such a long way in twelve months. We need to keep that going and we will go to Lansdowne Road with full confidence.
"This is still a young team, but we're getting experience together all the time and Scotland was another lesson. If we had romped away with the second half we may have got over excited, but now we can take a realistic approach and look at our mistakes. We were pretty fluid in the first half, but it got scrappy after the break.
"More than anything else we got frustrated and we can't allow that to happen. There was a failure to adjust and play the game we needed to play. We should have simplified the plan, gone back to a kicking game for ten minutes to get back into the flow, then moved on.
"When you have such attacking weapons in the backs perhaps you're tempted to over use them, but there comes a time when you can't play the expansive game. You have to get the mix right and play to the conditions, but hopefully we've learnt that and it will come right in the next few weeks."
Harris showed the form that helped him shine at the Rugby World Cup despite more than a month out with a bulging disk in his back: "I was pleased with my performance. I was reasonably comfortable, if a bit rusty after not playing for five weeks. The injury certainly got tested fifteen minutes from the end when I was munched by Jason White. Despite that I'm feeling pretty good and I think the injury is behind me."
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.
The WRU officially unveiled the new pitch today in time for Wales to take on Australia in the first of the Dove Men Series autumn international matches this Saturday. Head Groundsman Lee Evans and colleague Craig Campbell reflect on the 15-week project and look ahead to a pitch perfect future at Millennium Stadium.