Stuart McInally admits Scotland will have to step up a level if they are to make it three straight wins in the NatWest 6 Nations and keep their Championship hopes alive.
The Scots travel to Dublin to take on leaders Ireland, knowing that only a victory will keep them in the hunt for the title.
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But having seen off France and then England in their last two games at BT Murrayfield, the hooker is relishing the opportunity to travel to the Irish capital.
“Facing Ireland will probably our hardest challenge yet,” McInally told the SRU.
“They have strength across the park and they are so well coached by Joe Schmidt. They’ve had good consistency in that for a number of years now.
“They make a lot of metres because they look after the ball. Their carries are, a lot of the time, twice as many as their opposition.
“Playing over there is going to be special. Knowing how important a win is for us and what it could do for us going into the week after.
“We’re putting all our efforts into this one game to see where it takes us.”
It’s been a breakthrough season for McInally at Test level, establishing himself as a regular starter at hooker under Gregor Townsend.
And having played every minute of the wins over France and England, McInally believes his fitness is as good as it has been.
He added: “I’m just happy to be playing rugby.
“Compared to my fitness last year I feel like I’m nights and days ahead of that and that’s just because I’ve been playing more for Edinburgh this season and Scotland too.
“It’s good to on the pitch for 80 minutes and it’s nice to see in the final whistle, especially last week against England, which was so special.
“I pride myself on my fitness. When training I try and keep up with the back rows as best as I can and get as much out of it as I can. As long as I perform on the pitch, hopefully I’ll stay on again.”