Jump to main content


Women’s All-Ireland League Round-Up

Women’s All-Ireland League Round-Up

Friends became foes today as stars of Ireland’s terrific Women’s Rugby World Cup campaign were out in force for the first round of Women’s All-Ireland League Division 1 action, writes Kate Rowan.



Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Blackrock 43 St. Mary’s 0, Stradbrook
Galwegians 19 Highfield 22, Crowley Park
UL Bohemians 8 Old Belvedere 38, Thomond Park back pitch
Railway Union 22 Tralee 0, Park Avenue

Women’s All-Ireland League – Fixtures/Results

Women’s All-Ireland League – Tables

Recently retired Ireland captain Fiona Coghlan could only give her support to her old club UL Bohemians from the sidelines as they lost to defending league champions Old Belvedere, who scored six tries in a 38-8 win.

A partisan home crowd cheered on the hosts at a blustery Thomond Park back pitch as they fielded three players involved in the 2014 Word Cup – full-back Niamh Briggs, hooker Gillian Bourke and prop Fiona Hayes.

Old Belvedere’s starting line-up contained four of Ireland’s World Cup players – tighthead prop Ailis Egan, lock Sophie Spence, back rower Sharon Lynch and out-half Nora Stapleton.

Briggs, shortlisted in August for the IRB Women’s Player of the Year honour, scored all of her side’s points with an early penalty to open the scoring and a try after 34 minutes.

However, at that point Old Belvedere had already scored two tries through Egan and winger Janice Daly, with Stapleton missing the second conversion.

On the stroke of half-time the visitors further cemented their lead when outside centre Elise O’Byrne White broke through the middle to dot down.

After the interval, there was a slight lull in proceedings until Stapleton broke away to score under the posts at the 55-minute mark. She duly converted.

The extremely organised Old Belvedere outfit continued to find space and built up their line speed, causing difficulties for Bohs.

The title holders sealed their victory with two more tries in the final ten minutes – a superb team effort was finished off by Czech scrum half Kamila Rousova, who came on as a replacement, and Daly grabbed her second late on.

A scrappy encounter was played out at Galway’s Crowley Park as hosts Galwegians were left disappointed with their 22-19 loss to a determined Highfield side, who will return to Cork content with a win over the team that beat them in last season’s All-Ireland Cup final.

Blackrock looked to be in imperious form at Stradbrook as they put 43 unanswered points on fellow Dubliners St. Mary’s.

It was another World Cup squad member who provided the spark for ‘Rock as scrum half Tania Rosser helped herself to a hat-trick of tries, including the match’s opening two scores.

Blackrock, who led 19-0 at half-time, fielded four new caps and the bonus point success has moved them straight to the top of the table.

In today’s later kick-off at Park Avenue, the 22-0 scoreline in favour of newly-promoted Railway Union did not reflect the dogged display put in by Tralee.