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!
IRFU Chief Executive Philip Browne and Ireland Women's out-half and IRFU Women's & Girls Rugby Development Executive Nora Stapleton talk about the Irish bid to host the next Women's Rugby World Cup in 2017.
Looking forward to facing England on Sunday, Ireland winger Tommy Bowe said: "We've trained very well this week, we're really excited about the game. It's about going out there and doing whatever we can to get ourselves that win."
Second row Devin Toner previews Ireland's crunch RBS 6 Nations clash with England, saying: "It's a pretty formidable English pack. Attwood and Kruis have played fantastically well. They're well drilled and focused and their scrum and lineout are very good."
Looking forward to facing England this weekend, Ireland back rower Sean O'Brien said: "It's obviously exciting, but it's one game at a time. I don't think there's any more pressure on us than in the first two games. That's the way you have to look at it."
Irish Rugby TV sat down with Ireland Under-20 scrum coach John Fogarty to talk about the U-20 Six Nations so far and Friday's clash with England at Donnybrook. Tickets are on sale on www.ticketmaster.ie.
Ireland Under-20 captain Nick McCarthy and fellow back Billy Dardis spoke to Irish Rugby TV about Friday's U-20 Six Nations showdown with England at Donnybrook. Tickets available on www.ticketmaster.ie.
Shane Byrne and Malcolm O'Kelly preview the Ireland v England Legends match which takes place at Donnybrook this coming Saturday (kick-off 7.30pm). Tickets are available from www.ticketmaster.ie. All proceeds from the game will go to support the IRFU Charitable Trust and the RFU All Schools Charity.
Watch highlights from the Ireland team announcement press conference as Joe Schmidt reveals the team to play France. Peter O'Mahony says it is good to 'have some big figures back' for Saturday's clash.