They have been introduced to the tournament for the first time in 2017
Keith Wood feels two bonus points collected from the first two matches give Ireland some hope in their quest to win the 2017 Six Nations.
While losing to Scotland on the opening weekend was a setback, there was the consolation of a losing bonus point for finishing within the seven point margin necessary (it was five points ultimately between the sides at Murrayfield).
And in running in nine tries against Italy in Rome on Saturday, Ireland did more than enough to earn a winning bonus point.
The bonus point mitigates the points deficit to England and leave Ireland just two points off the favourites who are the opposition in Dublin on the fifth and final weekend of the tournament.
Thus there is still a chance for Ireland as ex-Ireland captain Wood summed up on Off The Ball.
"We've two bonus points already. I think we have a little bit of scope. We need to win the games first and I would hope we have the capacity to win all the rest of the games," he said.
"That will be the target and we'll know exactly what we'll need to do on the last weekend."
He also feels the setback against Scotland means Ireland won't let standards slip again for the remainder of the tournament.
But on the bonus points overall which were introduced for the first time for the 2017 edition of the Six Nations, Wood has reservations over its implementation.
"I'm against the bonus points as well. I think it's unfair to put bonus points on situations that aren't home and away. It just seems totally out of kilter and I think the Six Nations bowed to the pressure and they've already stated that they're thinking of bowing back again. For me, I just find it a bit of frustrating," he said.