Heat getting turned up ahead of Wales clash

There's nothing like the pressure of battle to focus the mind. For us mere mortals a big Six Nations weekend is right craic altogether.

But if you're a professional player or international manager the stakes are high.

It's not like you head into your office and pull up a spreadsheet to review your sales each month with your boss or board of directors, all behind the closed doors of your private business.

This is all in full view of the world's media now.

As Al Pacino famously said in the movie 'Any Given Sunday', sport is a game of inches.

Surely you've seen that clip at this stage? Even if you have, and are in the office reading this feeling a bit demotivated it's always good to refamiliarise yourself with the dramatic speech to get the pulse racing.

Point being that there appears to be a bit of needle surfacing between fellow New Zealanders Warren Gatland and Joe Schmidt.

Theres only three hundred and thirty kilometers between Joe's native Woodville and Warrens Rotorua which makes them practically neighbours in Irish terms, but there's no bromance in evidence ahead of their 2018 Six Nations meeting at Landsdowne road. 

In the past Warren Gatland has gone on the record as saying 'I don’t think Ireland play a lot of rugby, but they’ve been incredibly successful'. Ouch.

Ding ding. Round 2. Cut to the Irish team announcement ahead of the home game against Wales and reporters quizzing Joe about these types of remarks.

'Sometimes it is frustrating, because one opposition coach has tried to create that story and people have picked it up without doing their own analysis. I think there is a degree of frustration from our players. I am not sure why he would get more credence than Argentina head coach Daniel Hourcade who was really impressed or South Africa’s former boss Allister Coetzee who was really impressed.

Okaaay. Should be some team talk before kick off!