Further evidence of Irish rugby's strength in depth, the return of Tadhg Beirne to Ireland will provide Joe Schmidt with a selection headache he will no doubt be happy to have ahead of the 2019 World Cup.
Joining Munster from the Welsh club Scarlets, Beirne acknowledged in an interview with The Telegraph that "it was a decision I had to take to develop my career and try to achieve that international ambition."
At 26-years-old, Beirne has not yet had the opportunity to play senior rugby for his country.
Having been deemed dispensable by Leinster in 2016 after only getting what he deemed to be “four four-minute appearances” in blue, Beirne very nearly gave up the game completely before the call from Scarlets came:
I thought I might as well have one more crack at it and if it doesn’t work out I can defer and come back to my masters.
At the time I thought my career was over, but in hindsight getting released was the best thing that happened to me. There’s a lot of freedom here in terms of expressing yourself in the way you want to play, which suits me.
Given the trust Scarlets had shown in him, Beirne is under no illusions that leaving the club is not a decision he took lightly.
Although playing with Munster will invariably provide him with the option of playing for Ireland, "it still plays on [his] mind whether it was the right decision" to leave Wales at the end of this season:
It is a difficult one to take because the Scarlets took a big gamble on me when no one wanted me. You have to remember the bigger picture and not hold any grudges.
I want to wear that Irish jersey at some stage and that’s what I have based my decision on. Before that I will do everything I can to repay the Scarlets for all they have done for me.
The return will unquestionably be a big boost for Ireland, but for Beirne, it shall be somewhat bittersweet.