The Ireland Women’s squad has been announced for this season’s truncated Six Nations and, with less than two weeks to go before the competition starts, the kick off dates have finally been agreed.
There are 5 uncapped players in the young squad. Four are familiar faces from the 7’s squad with Stacey Flood, Eve Higgins, Emily Lane, and Amee Leigh Murphy-Crowe moving over to the XVs programme and they are joined by a new face in Grace Moore who moved to Railway Union in October 2019 but has had little game time since.
We have however managed to get a video of Moore scoring for Railway Union against Suttonians in October 2020 in the ECS.
As far as Ulster players go, it’s still only one representative from Ulster based sides with Malone’s Neve Jones the only squad member playing north of the border. However, Jones is joined by 3 Ulster “Exiles” with Old Belvedere’s Kathryn Dane and Brittany Hogan together with Railway Union’s Claire Boles all making the squad.
Blackrock’s Emma Hooban rejoins the squad alongside Boles who both missed out on the previous Six Nations but Ireland will be without some of our “Player of the Decade” nominees as Ciara Cooney, Edel McMahon and Grand Slam winner Larissa Muldoon all miss out due to injury.
Ciara Griffin will continue to captain the squad and she is one of only six players with more than 20 caps. Sene Naoupu is the only back with more than 20 and Griffin is joined in the forwards by Leah Lyons, Claire Molloy, Cliodhna Moloney and Lindsay Peat who add much needed experience.
It is the start of a new era as Women’s Rugby begins to build towards the Global Calendar 18 month down the line but first and foremost there is the small matter of qualification for the rearranged 2021 RWC which will now be taking place in 2022.
Ireland Women’s Squad
Enya Breen (UL Bohemian/ Munster) 4
Eimear Considine (UL Bohemian/ Munster) 15
Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere/ Ulster) 10
Lauren Delany (Sale Sharks/ IQ Rugby) 12
Aoife Doyle (Railway Union/ Munster) 6
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock College/ Leinster) 13
Stacey Flood (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Eve Higgins (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Ailsa Hughes (Railway Union/ Leinster) 12
Emily Lane (Blackrock College/Munster) *
Ellen Murphy (Blackrock College/Leinster) 7
Amee Leigh Murphy Crowe (Railway Union/Munster) *
Sene Naoupu (Old Belvedere/ Leinster) 38
Beibhinn Parsons (Ballinasloe/Blackrock College/ Connacht) 8
Laura Sheehan (Exeter Chiefs/IQ Rugby) 4
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere/ Leinster) 17
*Uncapped at this level
Claire Boles (Railway Union/Ulster) 3
Anna Caplice (Harlequins/ IQ Rugby) 14
Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere/ Leinster) 9
Laura Feely (Blackrock College/ Connacht) 15
Nichola Fryday (Blackrock College/ Connacht) 15
Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemian/ Munster) 33
Brittany Hogan (DCU/Old Belvedere/Ulster) 1
Emma Hooban (Blackrock College/Leinster) 7
Neve Jones (Malone/Ulster) 1
Leah Lyons (Harlequins/ IQ Rugby) 25
Aoife McDermott (Railway Union/ Leinster) 13
Claire Molloy (Wasps/IQ Rugby) 70
Cliodhna Moloney (Wasps/ IQ Rugby) 23
Grace Moore (Railway Union/IQ Rugby) *
Hannah O’Connor (Blackrock College/ Leinster) 2
Katie O’Dwyer (Railway Union/ Leinster) 1
Chloe Pearse (UL Bohemian/ Munster) 2
Lindsay Peat (Railway Union/ Leinster) 31
Dorothy Wall (Blackrock College/ Munster) 4
Dates and kick off times for the Championship were confirmed by Six Nations Rugby. Ireland start their campaign, a week after the rest of the teams, with an away trip to Wales on April 10th. Kick Off 17:00. There are rumours that the matches will be covered on BBC iPlayer but that has to be confirmed.
A week later they are back at Energia Park to face France, with that game down for a 14:15 start.
The tournament concludes with a final round of games on April 24th determined by results over the first two rounds.
Ireland’s Six Nations 2021 Fixtures
Wales v Ireland, Cardiff Arms Park, Saturday, April 10, 5pm
Ireland v France, Energia Park, Saturday, April 17, 2:15pm