Ireland will be playing for more than just pride in Rome tomorrow – with a multi-million euro windfall still up for grabs, writes David Kelly.
Ireland will be seeking to finish their disappointing campaign on a high in Rome with a winning finish that could be worth up to €2m – the difference between finishing third and rock bottom of the Six Nations pile.
"If we can go out, represent Ireland to the best of our ability and come out with a win, that would be some achievement given everything that has been thrown at the lads," said head coach Declan Kidney.
With England and Wales disputing the primary prize of the Six Nations title – a Grand Slam for England would be worth some €5.8m – prize money is distributed all the way down to last place.
An unthinkable rock-bottom finish for Ireland would still be worth some €928,000 from the record £12m prize fund, while the difference between the lower placings is believed to be worth up to €1m between 2nd and 6th.