Jordan Larmour and Andrew Conway start for Ireland against Scotland

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World beaters a year ago, Ireland began 2018 by sweeping their way to their third Six Nations title in five years and ended the year by following up their first-ever victory over the All Blacks in 2016 with another in commanding style.

"We're pleased with how things have gone today", Farrell told the media at today's press conference.

Based on recent Guinness Six Nations clashes, Ireland will perhaps enter the fixture the more confident, having outscored their opponents 72-48 over the last three meetings in Rugby's Greatest Championship. That's why I say cautiously that we're building.

"And that's what experience gives you, to make sure that it's focused in the right way".

"I don't think there's a huge amount between the two teams and so whoever does maybe get the bounce of the ball or can be just a little bit more efficient than the other, it may just tip the balance".

Former dual code global Farrell admitted Ireland have trained with added "bite" this week, as they sharpen up for their biggest match in some time.

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Ireland's Rob Kearney has been passed fit to face Scotland in Sunday's World Cup encounter, but Robbie Henshaw will definitely miss out.

A Scotland victory could make Pool A very interesting with hosts Japan and even Samoa keen to spoil someone's tournament. "So I suppose that's a culmination of what's happened over the last couple of months".

Andrew Conway will start on the wing with his Munster team-mate Keith Earls not fully fit after a thigh complaint.

"The prospect of facing them in the opening round of a World Cup is a fantastic challenge for our players and supporters around the world".

The victor of this game is likely to go on and top the pool, while the loser would probably be left battling with hosts Japan to be the other side making it to the knockout phase, where the All Blacks and Springboks are set to lie in wait.

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