Brian O’Driscoll will lead Ireland out for the 49th time on Saturday against Canada next Saturday.
And with a historic milestone beckoning for the game against New Zealand on November 15, the Leinster star claims his hunger to lead out his country is still as strong as ever.
“It’s always been a huge honour for me (to be captain),” said the 29-year-old.
“With a new set-up coming in, it brings something new and Declan (Kidney) had to choose amongst a huge number of great leaders.
"Obviously I was delighted to be asked to remain on as captain for the November series and play it by ear after that.
“It’s something I’ve really enjoyed and to be able to do it 48 times has been fantastic.
“Hopefully I can lead Ireland to something special.”
O'Driscoll was to the forefront of Irish rugby's so-called 'golden generation'.
And with many of the players that secured three Triple Crowns in 2004, 2006 and 2007 still involved and a smattering of young talents pushing through, |O’Driscoll believes the current squad under the new tutelage of Declan Kidney, is “one of the best Ireland squads” he has led.
“Yeah, I think so. I think with this new era, everyone coming in in August (for the first squad sessions) was probably a bit unsure as to how things were going to be with the new coaching staff,” said O’Driscoll, who will be keen for a big autumn Test series to give the Lions selectors a nod.
“Now that we’ve had a chance to settle in, I think there’s good excitement within the squad.
“From a back-line point of view, there’s huge competition as well as the forwards. (With the forwards), that’s always been there but maybe a little bit less so in the backs.
“The likes of Keith Earls is playing great stuff, Rob Kearney, Lukey (Luke Fitzgerald). Guys that can play in a number of different positions.
“So I don't think anyone is properly safe, which is a great place to be at. You’ll really have to be at the top of your game to retain your 1 to 15 jersey.”