Wednesday 22 November 2017

Three new caps in Ireland Women's side to face Wales in Six Nations opener

Ireland Women's captain Niamh Briggs. PRESS ASSOCIATION
Ireland Women's captain Niamh Briggs. PRESS ASSOCIATION

Head Coach Tom Tierney has named three uncapped players in the Ireland Women's side who began the defence of their Six Nations title against Wales at Donnybrook on Saturday afternoon (KO 1PM).

The trio making their debuts in Tierney's side are Winger Elise O'Byrne-White (Old Belvedere / Leinster) and hooker Zoe Grattage (Tralee / Munster) will win their first caps on Saturday, with Grattage's Tralee and Munster teammate, flanker Ciara Griffin hoping to make her Ireland debut from the bench.
The squad also features seven players who won their first caps last November in the Autumn International against England. Aine Donnelly and Mairead Coyne will win their second caps when they run out on Saturday, while Cliodhna Moloney, Lindsay Peat, Fiona Reidy, Ciara Cooney and Mary Healy will all be looking to add a second cap to their collection from the bench.
In all there are ten players who will be involved in a Six Nations side for the first time and Head Coach Tom Tierney is looking forward to the game;
"It's very exciting to have so many new players involved in their first Six Nations game. With some of the girls from last year's campaign involved with the Sevens at the moment, as well as some retirements over the past few seasons, it gives others the opportunity to pull on the green jersey. We're now at a stage where we are developing more and more girls who are capable at competing at international level and it's a great to see.”
Ireland Women's saquad to face Wales
Niamh Briggs (UL Bohemians / Munster) Captain;  Elise O'Byrne-White (Old Belvedere / Leinster)*, Aine Donnelly (Cill Dara / Leinster),  Sene Naoupu (Galwegians / Connacht), Mairead Coyne (Galwegians / Connacht),  Nikki Caughey (Railway Union / Ulster),  Larissa Muldoon (Skewen); Ailis Egan (Old Belvedere / Leinster), Zoe Grattage (Tralee / Munster), Ruth O'Reilly (Galwegians / Connacht), Sophie Spence (Old Belvedere /Leinster),  Marie-Louise Reilly (Old Belvedere / Leinster),  Paula Fitzpatrick (Toulouse), Claire Molloy (Bristol), Heather O'Brien (Toulouse).

Cliodhna Moloney (Railway Union / Leinster), Lindsay Peat (Railway Union / Leinster),  Fiona Reidy (UL Bohemians / Munster),  Ciara Cooney (Railway Union / Leinster), Ciara Griffin (Tralee / Munster)*, Mary Healy (Galwegians / Connacht), Nora Stapleton (Old Belvedere / Leinster), Jackie Shiels (Richmond)

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