Blackrock took top honours in the inaugural Smith's Supervalu '7s in the City' event - Ireland's first Women's only Sevens tournament which was hosted by Buccaneers RFC and supported Action Breast Cancer at Dubarry Park in Athlone.
Played on the June Bank Holiday Saturday, Blackrock triumphed in the Michael Moore Car Sales Open contest.
Old Belvedere won the Murphy's Law Junior competition with Carrick-on-Suir capturing the Medussa Hair Studio Under-18 title after a long day's rugby played in glorious weather that blessed this new Sevens competition.
Blackrock, with Michelle Claffey leading by example, were the only team in all three grades to win every match and thus emerged worthy victors. The stylish Amy O'Neill(pictured right with Buccaneers RFC President Ray Fagan) added to their success when she deservedly took the Player of the Tournament accolade.
Railway Union battled all the way to secure a place in the Open Cup final but they just could not match the pace and élan of 'Rock. St. Mary's repeated their pool win over Co. Carlow Coyotes to prevail in the Open Plate decider.
Host club Buccaneers looked like they would make a strong bid for the Junior honours with promising early victories but ran out of gas in their final pool game against Old Belvedere, who were then building up their own momentum after suffering defeat in their first match.
In the Junior decider, Old Belvedere atoned for that opening setback when overcoming Canterbury Warriors, the recent Carrick-on-Shannon/Longford alliance.
Buccs (pictured below) repeated their pool superiority against neighbours Tullamore in the Junior Plate final, but the Offaly representatives got some consolation when winning the prize for 'wackiest socks'! Carrick-on-Suir made their long trip from the south worthwhile when they prevailed in the U-18 section, overcoming luckless Portlaoise in that final.
The tournament drew a decent entry line-up and looks like it will establish itself as a regular annual event. Run primarily by Buccaneers Women's players Mele Kiripati, Sandra Griffin and Claire Wyper with assistance from Lorna Stuart-Trainor and Yvonne O'Shea, it provided entertaining fare and a family day atmosphere.
The club is indebted to the referees who officiated, to the generous sponsors, to the medics on duty, and of course to all who attended, be they players or spectators. Here's to next year!
Speaking after the 3rd/4th place play-off defeat to France, Ireland Women's head coach Philip Doyle said: "Semi-final of a World Cup, ranked fourth - I'm absolutely thrilled with that. It's one step, we've learned a huge amount at this World Cup. We'll put it in the bank now and hopefully, in three years' time at the next World Cup, another Irish team will be there (competing in the last-four)."
The Ireland squad got their first taste of the new Canterbury training kit with new sponsor Three on board. Check out the gear as Cian Healy, Tommy Bowe and Devin Toner give us their thoughts and register for updates on shop.irishrugby.ie.
Speaking ahead of the Women's World Cup semi-final against England, Ireland head coach Philip Doyle said: "We're really looking forward to it, it's going to be a great occasion. I'm sure it will be like any another massive game in that it's all down to percentages."
Relive all the drama and excitement of the Ireland Women's historic victory over New Zealand with Wyn Gruffydd's memorable commentary, the roar of the Irish fans in Marcoussis and Fiona Coghlan's inspiring post-match interview.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny has joined a host of political, sporting and broadcasting legends to send a message of support to the Ireland Women's squad ahead of the forthcoming Women's Rugby World Cup, which begins in Paris next Friday.
Speaking after the IRFU's Annual Council meeting, Chief Executive Philip Browne highlighted the importance of ticket revenue to the Union and also their sustained investments in the professional and domestic games.