Leinster coach Greg Feek has backed Cian Healy as he returns to France on knockout Heineken Cup duty for the first time since his humiliation at the hands of Benoit Lecouls in the semi-final defeat to Toulouse two years ago.
Since then, Healy's scrummaging has improved significantly, due mainly to the input of scrum specialist Feek.
And the Kiwi who, like Joe Schmidt, has worked alongside Clermont coach Vern Cotter in the past, believes that Healy is more than capable of handling grizzled Georgian Davit Zirakashvili.
"Everyone tries to target Cian a little bit in some respects," said Feek. "And I think that's hopefully when he can be at his best.
"Having coached under Vern Cotter before, I know what his traits are and who he might like to target. If that's the case, I'd back Cian to be able to come back from that.
"The way Cian plays the game, it's not just about scrummaging -- he carries the ball physically and does things that other props can't do.
"He flies into it at 100 miles an hour so it does take an awful lot out of him to play that kind of rugby week in, week out for six weeks or whatever.
"When he looks after his body and he's fresh mentally, he can compete with the best. So we've full confidence in Cian.
"There's a guy from Georgia, Davit Zirakashvili, he's up against who's very similar to Cian in many ways. He's very explosive, he can tackle out wide and he can carry ball explosively. So it's like against like in some ways.
"You're starting to see guys who can do a lot more than scrummage around the park and that's a real asset to the team. Davit's very strong in defence as well. So I expect it to be a good battle."
Feek believes that Clermont are virtually a complete side.
"From No 1 to No 23, they're tough, dynamic, powerful. They can kick and read the game really well. So they cover all the bases really well.
"But it's the powerful ball-carrier, the pick-and-go stuff that stands out. It's hard to maul against them.
"With Nathan Hines and Jamie Cudmore there, they've guys who can go into the trenches and battle it out.
"They've props who scrum and lift line-out, carry out wide and defend. So it's a good mix and with Julien Bonnaire in there, he brings huge experience defensively. It's a great team to get again and see what they try to do."
The rest of Europe stands agog in anticipation.