"Brian is a world class player and I' really looking forward to playing with him. It's time to really lay down a marker and put your hand up for a Test jersey and I know I need a big game against The Sharks," said Byrne.
"Playing with different players from other countries is an exceptional feeling. There are players who you really want to play with, and Brian is certainly one of those.
"You can see in training how good he is. He is very inspirational - when he talks you listen.
"Ian McGeechan wants to look at different combinations and I'm lucky to get my third game. I need to get into the game a bit more than I did at the weekend and I know I have to take my chance."
Byrne has been like the Rock of Gibraltar under the high ball throughout the Six Nations and with the Lions in South Africa, although he did drop one in Bloemfontein.
He winces at the reminder, especially as the ball caught the end of his fingers and almost caused a dislocation.
"The high ball went up and it just caught the end of my fingers. Everyone makes mistakes and I just have to put it to the back of my mind," added Byrne.
"Thankfully nothing came of it and we won the game, but it would have been a different story if we lost the match. I just caught the end of my fingers and got a bit of bruising - and a fine from the players after the game."
Having seen players like Jack Matthews (1950), JPR Williams (1971 and 1974), Scott Gibbs (1993 and 1997) and Gareth Thomas (2005) all reach Test status from his home town of Bridgend, Byrne is keen to follow suit.
"I want to finish this season on a high. I did not really think I was favourite for the Test jersey, but it would be a dream come true if I got it," he said.
"To be on the tour was great, but to claim a Test jersey would take it to another level. This will probably be my last chance in a Lions jersey and that is why I don't want to have any regrets and look back on the tour and worry that I did not do everything I needed.
"I know that I have to be on top of my game. There is a big pressure to put down a marker for that Test jersey."