Ireland (3) 8
TRY: Niamh Kavanagh. PEN: Nora Stapleton.
New Zealand: (5) 38
TRY: Selica Winiata (2), Portia Woodman (3), Kelly Brazier. CON: Kendra Cocksedge (3). Hazel Tubic.

Ireland Women recorded their third loss of thier Autumn Series on Sunday afternoon at the UCD Bowl, this time going down 9 – 38 to an accomplished New Zealand side.

We’d predicted that New Zealand would pull away in the second half and that’s pretty much how it happened with the teams turning round at 3 – 5, Nora Stapleton replying with a penalty after Selica Winiata crossed for an early try.

A battling display with, captain, Paula Fitzpatrick and Claire Molloy prominent, kept the game tight for the remainder of the first half but the yellow card for the hard working Cliodhna Moloney, just before the break, appeared to be the catalyst for the Black Ferns to cut loose.

Winiata crossed for her second shortly after the break to put New Zealand seven points clear and though Ireland responded well initially they started to tire around the 50th minute and Portia Woodman cut loose, the Black Ferns speedster scoring three tries in fifteen minutes as the Irish defence became increasingly porous.  Their spikey scrum half Kendra Cocksledge converted all three as the visitors opened up a 3 – 31 lead by the 70th minute and Kelly Brazier crossed four minutes later, with replacement Hazel Tubic converting, to move the score on to 3 – 38 with five minutes to go.

Full credit to Ireland; they roused themselves for one last effort and a break by Claire McLaughlin set up a good position in the middle of the park. A couple of penalty offences later and the New Zealand second row Jackie Fereti was sent to the bin. Ireland seized their chance and Niamh Kavanagh crossed out wide with the last play of the game to give a final score of Ireland 8 New Zealand 38. 

Ireland Women: Niamh Briggs, Mairead Coyne, Nicole Fowley, Sene Naoupu, Claire McLaughlin, Nora Stapleton, Larissa Muldoon, Lindsay Peat, Cliodhna Moloney, Ailis Egan, Marie Louise Reilly, Orla Fitzsimons, Ciara Griffin, Claire Molloy, Paula Fitzpatrick. Replacements: Leah Lyons, Fiona Hayes, Fiona Reidy, Nichola Fryday, Ciara Cooney, Mary Healy, Jackie Shiels, Niamh Kavanagh.

We’ve two fantastic galleries from Ian Humes and Bob Given. Click on the pictures below to start the slideshow. You can share the individual pictures on social media gallery by clicking the appropriate icon that appears at the bottom of each picture.