The Ireland Women’s Sevens squad to take part in the third round of the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series in Atlanta, Georgia (April 8-9) has been confirmed.
The selected squad will travel to the United States early next week and have been drawn in Pool B of the Atlanta Sevens with Canada, France and Russia.
The Russian side are one of the teams that will compete with Ireland for the final spot at the Rio Olympics at the Olympic Repechage, which takes place in UCD in June.
The pool games in Atlanta will take place on Friday, April 8, with the play-off fixtures run off the following day.
Three members of the Irish squad were involved in the recent Six Nations with the Women’s 15-a-side team. Sene Naoupu, who played in all five Six Nations games, returns to the Sevens circuit, having played in Dubai but she did not travel to Sao Paulo.
Alison Miller, who scored a hat-trick in Ireland’s Six Nations win over Scotland, is also included, as is Kim Flood, who is set to add to her collection of Ireland caps, having won her first XV cap against Italy. She will look to make her World Series debut in Atlanta.
Louise Galvin, who featured in Dubai and Sao Paulo, suffered a fracture to her leg during training and will miss out on rounds three and four of the World Series. The side will again be captained by Lucy Mulhall.
Speaking ahead of the Atlanta tournament, IRFU Director of Sevens and Women’s Rugby, Anthony Eddy, said: “While things didn’t go as we’d have liked in Sao Paulo, we’ll learn from those games and will look for better displays over the coming weeks. The girls have been putting the work in at training, but now it is about putting that work into practice and getting some results from it.
“The players who were involved in the Six Nations finished on a positive note, so hopefully we can carry that winning spirit to Atlanta.”
After the Atlanta Sevens, the Ireland Women’s Sevens side will travel to Langford, British Columbia in Canada for the fourth round of the World Series, which takes place on April 16-17.
IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS Squad (HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series, Atlanta, Georgia, April 8-9):
Ashleigh Baxter (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock College/Leinster)
Kim Flood (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Stacey Flood (Railway Union/Leinster)
Claire Keohane (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Alison Miller (Portlaoise/Connacht)
Lucy Mulhall (Rathdrum/Leinster) (capt)
Amee Leigh Crowe (Railway Union/Munster)
Sene Naoupu (Galwegians/Connacht)
Audrey O’Flynn (Talent ID Programme)
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Megan Williams (St. Mary’s)
* Denotes World Series newcomer
IRELAND MATCH SCHEDULE – ATLANTA SEVENS:
Friday, April 8 –
France v Ireland – 12.52pm local time/5.52pm Irish time
Canada v Ireland – 3.14pm local time/8.14pm Irish time
Russia v Ireland – 6.20pm local time/11.20pm Irish time
Saturday, April 9 –
Matches will be streamed via worldrugby.org.