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Ireland Women’s Training Squad Is Selected

Ireland Women’s Training Squad Is Selected

Ireland Women’s coach John O’Sullivan has added a host of new faces to the national training squad which was selected this week, in advance of the 2008 Women’s Six Nations championship. Read on for further details.

O’Sullivan has selected a 35-player squad for training weekends this month and will narrow this down to 26 at the end of the month to form the core Six Nations squad. This final panel of players will warm up for next year’s competition with a training week in Spain at the end of December.

The initial 35-player squad however sees a number of new players get a chance to stake their claim. Up front there are fresh faces like Leinster’s Emer McManamly and Louise Austin while in the back division newcomers like young Munster centre Niamh Briggs will be hoping to make an impact.

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Also back in the squad are Patrique Kelly and Joy Neville who will be training with Ireland for the first time since last year’s World Cup, having returned from a year of travelling.

Not in the squad is Irish captain Sarahjane Belton but the skipper is hoping to be recovered from a back injury in time for the sessions in the new year. Missing out also are back rowers Debbie Clarke and Rachel Boyd due to work commitments. The duo were regulars in last year’s match squads so back row will be an area of fierce competition this season.

Coach John O’Sullivan said the presence of new players was a reflection of a high quality Interprovincial campaign, which saw Munster retain the title.

“There are a lot of players who I saw during the campaign who may not have been with Ireland before, who have a real chance of making it. The training weekends in November are a chance to us to look at our patterns and allow us to see how players fit into those and the systems we’ll be using,” he said.

The sessions will include a lot of training games and match situations, according to O’Sullivan, and will allow the coaching staff to see how players are gelling together.


Forwards (19) – Fiona Coghlan, Marie Barrett, Laura Guest, Gillian Bourke, Emer McManamly, Jess Limbert, Yvonne Nolan, Janet Reid, Deirdre Scannell, Germaine Healy, Kate O’Loughlin, Caroline Mahon, Louise Austin, Orla Brennan, Joy Neville, Eimear O’Sullivan, Sinead Ryan, Aoife Mahony, Paula O’Connor.

Backs (16) – Louise Beamish, Liz Comerford, Tania Rosser, Jo O’Sullivan, Lynne Cantwell, Julie Craig, Niamh Briggs, Nicole Fitzgerald, Patrique Kelly, Mairead Kelly, Shannon Houston, Grace Davitt, Amy Davis, Jackie Shiels, Amanda Greensmith, Helen Brosnan.