The past four seasons in Leinster has not been very easy for James Tracy especially with the ferocious competition, yet he has been able to fight through the ranks at the club.
Now he is looking to cement and establish himself in the pecking order of the Ireland Rugby team at Test level.
After making 26 appearances for his province this season, he was rewarded with a first cap off the bench for Ireland as a result of his consistent performance.
His debut match against Canada last November at the Aviva Stadium ended in a 52-21 victory for Ireland.
It’s been a steady climb for the Leinster hooker as he has had two other appearances from the bench for the team after the first. One was in the Six Nations were Ireland faced off against Italy.
The second was last Saturday against Japan were Ireland came off victorious with a 50-22 win.
He is now looking forward to his first test start in Tokyo against the Brave Blossoms in the rematch holding on Saturday.
“I think any competitive person in any environment wants to be playing,” said Tracy.
“If I get the opportunity I’d love it. It would be an honour to pull on the jersey again. Hopefully I do, but if I don’t, we can move on.”
The hooker position is quite competitive and Joe Schmidt has quite an abundance of players to choose from.
There’s Rory Best, who is currently on Duty in New Zealand with the Lions, Dave Heffernan, Niall Scannell, Sean Cronin and Tracy all vying for a starting berth.
The 26 year old will not be taking anything for granted this weekend as he looks to fend off competition for a starting spot from the likes of Heffernan and Scannell.