Record-breaking centre Brian O'Driscoll savoured a rousing ovation and a winning finale as he made his last international appearance on Irish soil.
Ireland's crushing 46-7 win over Italy was a vital one in Six Nations terms, and all eyes were on the 35-year-old O'Driscoll after his 140th Test match.
O'Driscoll fought back the tears as he admitted he was still getting used to the prospect of looming retirement.
"I haven't let myself think about. It is emotional," O'Driscoll said.
"It has been a huge part of my whole adult life and to leave here [the Aviva Stadium] is going to be hard.
"But this was a good way to leave today and hopefully we have set ourselves up for next week.
"I feel humbled by the reaction. It seems a bit of of a joke that you get get man of the match for 60 minutes, but I have loved my time playing in this jersey.
"It had to come to an end at some stage and I am glad to go out at home with a big win.
"It will only properly set in when I have had a bit of time."
O'Driscoll is now hoping to end his Ireland career by lifting the Six Nations trophy in Paris next Saturday.
He added: "Hopefully next week there is a performance and a championship in this team. We have to go to France with huge positivity.
"It is one thing playing in this jersey but another thing altogether winning in this jersey.
"We have built a good standard. We are capable of doing great things and we have to start next week by trying to win a second championship as this unit of players."