Connacht centre Tom Farrell says that his involvement in the Ireland camp has made him even more eager to take the next step.
The Dubliner has been one of the standout performers for the western province this season and was called up to the extended Six Nations squad.
The former Under-20 cap didn't make a match-day panel during the underwhelming campaign but says even training with the squad has improved his game.
"It was brilliant, it probably brought me on that bit more," the 25-year-old told the RTÉ Rugby podcast.
"Going up to the camp I probably knew the pressures and the intensity of it all but when you are experiencing it firsthand it can be a bit daunting at first.
"But you settle in and become accustomed to it and it really does bring you on.
"It just makes you hungry to be there. When you are training with these types of players you just want to push on to that next step and get that first cap."
Despite relinquishing their 2018 crown in a disappointing manner, Farrell, who joined Andy Friend's side in 2017, says there is no sense of panic, with a World Cup looming, among the wider squad.
"I still think [the vibe] is good," he added.
"If you look back at the last 18-24 months they’ve only lost a handful of games so there’s no need for a mayday call just yet, we’re still in a good position."
Connacht can secure Champions Cup qualification and a place in the Guinness Pro14 play-offs with a win at home over Cardiff on Saturday afternoon.
"Over the last two seasons we’ve been building towards that," he added.
"The teams, the staff, the players and the fans deserve to in the Champions Cup.
"Everyone out there knows the magnitude of the game for us – if we win we’re qualified for the Champions Cup."
Meanwhile, Connacht have announced that Tom Daly, Stephen Fitzgerald and Angus Lloyd have all signed contracts with the province ahead of 2019/20 season.
NEW CONTRACTS ✍️ | We are delighted to announce that Tom Daly, Stephen Fitzgerald and Angus Lloyd have all signed contracts ahead of the 2019/20 season.— Connacht Rugby (@connachtrugby) April 10, 2019
The trio had featured for the province on loan periods during the current campaign.
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