It is imperative at this stage of the tournament that we don't lose the run of ourselves, but I can't recall a more complete rugby performance from an Irish team in recent times than what we witnessed in Dunedin yesterday.
Beating England the way we did back in March was momentous for many reasons, but, for me, the high-stakes context of this victory elevated it to a higher status.
This was a day when everything fitted into place through meticulous planning, hard graft and clinical execution.
It represented a game in which each and every individual contributed from beginning to end; in which every ounce of honest effort in the first half was matched by a display of total confidence and quality in the second. It was total rugby. Even the final five minutes, when the game was well and truly won, were as impressive as the corresponding period at the start.
Factor in a third quarter that was as close to rugby perfection as you could hope for, and you've got the drift.
You reap what you sow and by matching the fired-up Italians everywhere, not least in the much-hyped scrum, we paved the way for the uninhibited quality we witnessed in a 27-point second-half extravaganza.
Only in the driving maul did we struggle for parity in the opening period, but even their most potent weapon on the day was negated after the break.
The benefits of Eden Park and that extraordinary victory over the Wallabies are now kicking in. Confidence is clearly spreading in a group that had rightly been pilloried for its slowness in coming out of the blocks.
We demanded brain over brawn in varying the angle and point of attack and we got it in abundance, with forwards cleverly interlinking with soft hands and subtle changes of direction that bit further away from the breakdown.
Moreover, the indiscipline, which was such an obvious and costly problem in the spring, has now been addressed in the most practical way.
We will deal with the biggest clash in Irish/Welsh rugby history in the coming days, but for now let us bask in a professional job incredibly well done. We didn't just beat Nick Mallet's well-tutored, highly motivated side, we positively pulverised them.
Our scrum was awesome, our lineout reliable and our work at the breakdown, both with the ball and without, was exemplary.
The work of the front-row at scrum time was exceptional. Here Mike Ross has been immense.
Given the appropriate platform, Stephen Ferris and Sean O'Brien wreaked havoc. We now have as good a back-row as any other team at this World Cup.
And while Ferris and O'Brien will garner the lion's share of praise for their broken field running, we cannot overlook the role being played by the under-fire Jamie Heaslip.
To that, add the key role played by Conor Murray. He is the essence of simplicity, a scrum-half who goes about his business in the most understated way.
One way or the other, we, like the Welsh, announced our credentials to the rest of the watching world. Our World Cup focus extends no further than Warren Gatland and co, but dare we dream to the French and English beyond that?
Who knows what lies in the fortnight ahead, but one thing is sure, we are now serious contenders for this World Cup.