You may not have noticed that while the world's oldest and self-styled greatest rugby championship continued in three European capitals last weekend, one of the youngest was also marching doggedly towards its conclusion in another hemisphere.
We are all prone to a little exaggeration from time to time so we'll try and keep a lid on this one. Not since November 2018 when the All Blacks came to town have I been party to an Aviva Stadium atmosphere in which players and supporters were umbilically linked from first minute to last.
When people look back at how Ireland went from the highs of a Grand Slam and beating the All Blacks in 2018 to the soul searching and naval gazing that followed another World Cup let down last autumn, the name of England will loom large.
Eleven years and 120 Tests separate James Ryan and Alun Wyn Jones but when the two clash in this afternoon's Six Nations game at the Aviva Stadium (2.15pm kick-off), the watching crowd will be treated to a battle between two of the game's very best second-rows.
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