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Ireland skipper Rory Best set for bittersweet farewell to Six Nations

Now mum and dad can enjoy watching Ireland again, jokes Rory as he bids Six Nations farewell

Lasting smile: Rory Best sets out on his final Six Nations captain’s run in Cardiff yesterday
Lasting smile: Rory Best sets out on his final Six Nations captain’s run in Cardiff yesterday
Jonathan Bradley

By Jonathan Bradley

Ireland skipper Rory Best is set for a bittersweet farewell to the Six Nations in Cardiff this afternoon.

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The man who will retire from Test rugby after the World Cup leads his side against Wales in the Principality Stadium (2.45pm kick-off) with the hosts chasing a Grand Slam and Ireland's own title hopes needing not only a win but help from Scotland against England in Twickenham.

Ulsterman Best said his farewell to the tournament will be special but joked that at least his family could watch without nerves in future.

"I've been incredibly lucky to play in it for so many years," he said after his final captain's run. "It's a proper, traditional rugby tournament.

"While I will miss the matches, there will be moments like struggling to put a pre-match meal down your neck which I won't miss.

"My mum and dad haven't enjoyed an Ireland game since 2005 with nerves. It will be nice to enjoy matches with my family. I wanted to go out on my terms, when I feel I'm playing well and we know we still have something to do later in the year."

The 36-year-old added: "It will take one of our best performances of the Six Nations," he said. "We have produced good performances before but it is so tough to come here against a side on such a winning roll in this place, which is incredibly tough to win in anyway."

Ireland U20's completed their Six Nations Grand Slam in a 26-17 win over Wales last night.

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