The Ulster Women’s team has been named for their final IRFU Women’s Interprovincial Championship game away to Connacht this Saturday at Corinthians RFC in Galway (kick-off 2pm).
Ulster coaches Jarrett Truscott and Philip Doyle have made six changes to the starting line-up from last weekend’s defeat to Leinster under the Donnybrook floodlights.
Vice-captain Claire McLaughlin, one of Ulster’s brightest performers in the series to date, moves to outside centre. She will be partnered in midfield by Ireland Under-18 Sevens international Brittany Hogan, who makes her first start of the campaign.
Also making their first starts in the series are hooker Beth Cregan, winger Leah McGoldrick and full-back Vicky Irwin, while Hannah Beattie regains her place at lock following an appearance off the bench last Saturday.
Speaking after the 46-0 defeat to Leinster, Ballynahinch’s Hogan told the Front Row Union website: “It was disappointing, we came out expecting a tight match, a match we wanted to win, but unfortunately it wasn’t our day. We were too narrow in defence and Leinster caught us out wide. They were more clinical with the ball in hand and that’s what let us down.
“It was a fast game. Senior rugby is faster anyway but this was especially so due to the artificial surface at Donnybrook. It was dry and the ball wasn’t dropped many times so it was a big step up, but it wasn’t too bad.”
ULSTER WOMEN (v Connacht): Vicky Irwin; Leah McGoldrick, Claire McLaughlin, Brittany Hogan, Amy Davis; Jemma Jackson, Kathryn Dane; Ilse van Staden, Beth Cregan, Sorcha Mac Laimhin, Naomi McCullagh, Hannah Beattie, Gemma McCutcheon (capt), Ashleigh Baxter, Lauren Maginnes.
Replacements: Brigid Collins, Shauna Martin, Lesley Megarity, Aishling O’Connell, Storm Cobain, Peita McAlister, Emma Jordan, Maeve Liston.
ULSTER WOMEN – INTERPRO FIXTURES/RESULTS:
Saturday, December 3: Ulster Women 3 Munster Women 16, Kingspan Stadium
Saturday, December 10: Leinster Women 46 Ulster Women 0, Donnybrook
Saturday, December 17: Connacht Women v Ulster Women, Galway Corinthians RFC, 2pm