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.
Ireland were selected into Pool D which has a distinctly RBS 6 Nations flavour as it also features France and Italy before either USA or Canada and one of the European qualifiers are also entered at a later date.
While Ireland avoided the Southern Hemisphere sides they have a poor record against France, winning just one of 13 matches since 2003 and lost to them in both the 2003 and 2007 World Cup.
And the 33-year-old believes the clash with Les Bleus will be the crucial match in the group although he expects his team to have to take on France’s might without him.
“I'll be there in some capacity but as a player I doubt that very much. It's far too far away to be contemplating playing,” he said.
“I think my World Cup ship has sailed but I'll be there as Ireland's number one supporter.
“Early in my career we managed to get a few victories against France and then all of a sudden they became a very difficult team for us to beat.
“They play with a lot of confidence against us because of that record.
“I'd imagine France and Italy are quietly happy they've drawn us. They'll think they can beat us.
“It leaves it quite open because all three are capable of beating one another.”