Scott Fardy spoke to the media in Leinster Rugby HQ this week ahead of the St Stephen’s Day clash with Munster at Thomond Park in the Guinness PRO14.

This will be Fardy’s first Christmas since arriving in Ireland back in August. At this time of year – the Australian summer – Super Rugby is in its off-season and players can celebrate without having to worry about any matches on the horizon.

But with a game on the 26th, celebrations will be a little bit different this festive season.

“It’s a good day, apparently. The boys have said it’s a good, fun trip down there,” Fardy said about the visit to Thomond, speaking to the media on Tuesday.

“Obviously very different to what I’m usually doing at Christmas. I’m usually having a few beers and some nice prawns in the sun down at the beach. It’s my first wintery Christmas here in Ireland.”

The trip to Limerick comes after bruising back-to-back games in Europe for both teams. Leinster overcame the English champions, Exeter Chiefs, in the back-to-back games, while Munster defeated Leicester Tigers at Welford Road on Sunday and at Thomond Park the previous Saturday.

The turnaround between the games is 10 days for Leinster, and Fardy believes that taking the opportunity to step away and rest will be important after an intense two weeks.

“There’s been two weeks of mentally exhausting rugby and high-pressure stuff. Guys need to step back from the game for a couple of days. And then when you come back in, start getting prepared for that game, train as well as we can and get ready for what is going to be a big, if not more physical game than what we had over the last two weeks.”

Ring in the New Year at the RDS Arena when Connacht come to visit in the first of back-to-back home Interprovincial derbies on 1st January. Get tickets.

Then five days later Ulster come to the RDS for a crucial PRO14 Conference B clash. Get tickets.

Leinster v Connacht