4 Dec, 10:19
Grand Slam winners Fiona Coghlan and Nora Stapelton have returned the Women's RBS 6 Nations trophy to Chief Executive John Feehan at the Six Nations offices in Dublin.
Delaney also paid tribute to the organisation of the tournament. "It was really first class," he said." nothing left to chance and I congratulate the Four Nations Youth Committee for the way they handled the whole programme."
In the final game, up against a particularly strong Scottish outfit, Ireland showed plenty of courage and no small amount of skill and things might have been different if they had enjoyed perhaps a little more luck.
Donal Nee - back after a serious injury - orchestrated their best chance of the opening half when his searing mid field break took him the length of the field, a last gasp tackle denying the Irish the opening try. At that stage it was 3 points apiece after Andrew Skeen and Paddy O'Toole had exchanged penalties and then the Scots took the lead when Stuart Taylor scored in the 28th minute, Skeen adding the points for a 10-3 lead.
However, the turning point came just before the interval when Benjamin Dunnett scored the Scots' second try to take a 17-6 lead into the half time break. Full back David Bryan was injured defending that particular move and Stephen Carey moved from the wing to full-back. The injury to Bryan forced a total reshuffle of the backline and while the Irish were adjusting, the Scots sealed the outcome. Just after O'Toole had narrowed the gap with his second penalty, they had a try from Adrian Nash converted by Skeen which left the Irish with a mountain to climb.
To their great credit, they never shirked that task and were rewarded with a try from substitute Tim Ryan.
However, Scotland were in control and two converted tries in the closing minutes gave the final scoreline a flattering hue.
Ireland. D Bryan (C Crawford); S Carey, B O'Donnell, D Nee (D O'Reilly), J Harney; P O'Toole, R Pollock (P Gill); M Black (A Friel), J Musgrave, R Loughney, S Hennessy, M O'Hea (L Sullivan), F Leonard capt, O Hennessy (P Currie), T Doran (T Ryan).