Doyle rings changes
IRELAND Women's coach Philip Doyle has shuffled his pack ahead of his side's historic first clash at Lansdowne Road.
Defeat to England at Twickenham put paid to any hopes of back-to-back Grand Slams, but the champions remain in the hunt for a second championship in a row and Doyle has made four changes to his team ahead of a difficult meeting with an Italian team who have beaten Wales and Scotland in their games to date.
"The team put in a strong performance against England and we are very much still in the hunt for the championship," Doyle said. "Italy pushed us all the way last year so we will not be taking them lightly and will need a clinical performance."
Grace Davitt moves into the centre instead of Jenny Murphy, while Amy Davis replaces Larissa Muldoon at scrum-half. Gillian Bourke moves to tighthead from hooker with Stacey-Lea Kennedy starting in the No 2 jersey, while Paula Fitzpatrick comes in for Laura Guest on the bench.
Team in Factfile – Page 49