Ulster second row Dan Tuohy has already locked horns with Brad Thorn on the international stage and is relishing the prospect of going toe-to-toe with the 2011 World Cup winner again in the Heineken Cup final on Saturday.
Tuohy made a try-scoring international debut against the All Blacks in the 2010 Test at New Plymouth – a match New Zealand won 66-28 – but now it is the European club game's showpiece occasion and the first all-Irish final.
"This is as big as it gets – club wise is does not get any bigger than a Heineken Cup final – the magnitude of this game is just massive," said Tuohy.
"Yes, I have played against the big fellow before when I made my Ireland debut in New Zealand two years ago. However, we got a drubbing. We were on the end of a bit of a hiding and it was not a great experience.
"He hit me a few times in a few rucks, which left a pretty lasting impression, so hopefully Brad will be the one on the receiving end this time."
Springbok Johann Muller, Ulster's captain, and Tuohy are set to go up against Leinster captain Leo Cullen and Thorn in the critical line-out aerial battle.
"Leo and Brad have got unbelievable records in the game and while Johann would be considered in the same bracket as those two I guess I am the one who is a bit wet behind the ears internationally," he said. "But I hope I can impose myself on the final and make a lasting impression."
While Leinster are challenging for an unprecedented three Heineken Cup crowns in four years this is only Ulster's second final appearance.
"We have had to wait 13 years to get into another Heineken Cup final but the atmosphere is fairly relaxed and there is enough experience in the squad to keep the boys feet firmly on the ground as we have not achieved anything just yet," he said.
"We are in the Heineken Cup final but that is all we have got so far so lets hope we can be Heineken Cup winners and not just Heineken Cup finalists.
"Leinster did the double over us in this season's Pro12 but I don't think that makes them favourites for the final. What does make them favourites is having won two Heineken Cup finals in the last three years and while we are no illusions that we will be the underdogs, I think that suits us just fine.
"We were the underdogs when we went down to Munster in the quarterfinals and delivered but I think the pressure got to us a bit in the semifinal against Edinburgh at the Aviva and we did not play to our full potential.
"It wasn't until the home pool game against Leicester that we really put in an 80 minutes performance and got people up on their feet realising we are a force to be reckoned with but that Munster game was the key.
"As we will be the underdog on Saturday I think you will see us as a different animal as the pressure is on them as favourites to win the final.
"Both clubs have great travelling support so hopefully it will be 50-50. They certainly had magnificent support out in Bordeaux and we take a lot of support with us so it should be an incredible atmosphere and hopefully we will have as many fans there as Leinster."
Gilbert has released a new line of rugby cleats. The Gilbert Virtuo 8S is part of the exciting new product. Check it out.
The Barbarians are one of the top invitational rugby sides with a long history and classic rugby jersey.
The Nike Tiempo is a solid rugby cleat and one of few styles still made from full-grain natural leather.
The Lions get ready for their matches with this green training jersey. It's what the players wear. Get in the Gear!
A cool looking all black rugby cleat with the high performance adidas is known for. Get in the Gear!
Wear the crest of the British and Irish Lions on your t-shirt. A great look for the summer.
The Lions are ready to get their Australia tour underway. They arrive in Perth on Monday.
The New Zealand All Blacks training jersey for 2013/14. Get in the Gear!
The USA Rugby Pro Alternate rugby jersey is perfect for any fan of the Eagles. Get yours to wear during the summer Test matches.
The NEW All Blacks 2013/14 jersey has arrived at World Rugby Shop. Dare to wear the colors of the All Blacks.