Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has declared this week's Test with Ireland the toughest of Australia's grand slam bid, as he prepares to welcome back his refreshed stars.
A fortnight ago Ireland ended the All Blacks' world record 18-Test winning run, and again pushed the world champions to the limit with a gutsy 21-9 loss on Saturday.
Those results compare favourably to Australia's Bledisloe Cup whitewash by New Zealand this year, in which their best result was a 20-point defeat.
"What I can glean from it all is that we've got our work cut out for us because (Ireland) got closer to them in their two games than we did on the three games," Cheika said in Dublin on Monday.
"It's going to be a pretty tough battle."
In charge of an unbeaten team through three Spring Tour Tests, Cheika has been at pains to smother talk of winning the grand slam and insists his players "reset the clock" after each win - so as to not get caught up in their own celebrations.
"For us, it's just about resetting at zero today, saying 'this is going to be the biggest game of the tour, without a doubt' and getting stuck into it," he said of his preparation for Saturday's clash at The Aviva Stadium.
There's little question Ireland will present the stiffest challenge of the tour to date, with powerful flanker Sean O'Brien proving a colossus against the All Blacks this weekend - despite coming away with a loss.
The contest at the breakdown is certain to be one of the more pivotal clashes across the park - with Australia to be boosted by the return of vice-captain Michael Hooper and No.8 Lopeti Timani, both of whom were among the rested against France.
They will join David Pocock, fresh from a standout performance as captain against France - though Sean McMahon continues to apply pressure to the starting backrow.
Hooper needed a break more than most, having played all bar 42 minutes of the Waratahs' and Wallabies' 2016 campaigns prior to Saturday's narrow win over Les Blues, but admitted he didn't enjoy his time on the sidelines.
"I was on the edge of my seat, particularly at the back end of the game," Hooper said.
"Like Cheika's been saying and everyone's been saying, I was proud of the guy's effort. That was a tough game.
"I was stinging to get out there and hating that I couldn't get out there, running around with the boys trying to help and pitch in.
"I feel good. It's just about getting back into the swing of things ... getting back into training and putting my hand up for selection which I'm sure myself and the guys who did have a day or so here last week will do."