The Ireland Women’s Sevens squad to take part in the Elche 7s tournament in Spain this weekend has been confirmed.
The two-day tournament will also feature Belgium, England, Spain, Wales and a Spanish invitational team. All teams will play against one another across Saturday and Sunday, with the top two-ranked sides playing off in the final on day 2.
The confirmed squad of 14 features a number of players who have come through the Ireland Under-18 system, with Kathy Baker, Eve Higgins and Molly Scuffil-McCabe the latest to progress to the senior ranks.
Also in the squad are Claire Boles, Stacey Flood and Katie Heffernan. The trio spent time during the summer in Australia where they competed with Bond University in the Aon 7s tournament.
Five of the players named are returning to Sevens duty having been involved in the Women’s Rugby World Cup in August. Ashleigh Baxter, Jeamie Deacon, Katie Fitzhenry, Louise Galvin and Hannah Tyrrell all lined out for their country in Dublin and Belfast. Completing the squad are Women’s Sevens captain Lucy Mulhall, Anna McGann and Audrey O’Flynn.
Speaking ahead of the tournament in Alicante, Anthony Eddy, the IRFU Director of Women’s and Sevens Rugby, said: “This weekend marks the first tournament of the season for our Women’s Sevens players, and it’s a chance for them to play against international opposition as we build towards the World Sevens Series getting underway in Dubai in early December.
“It’s great to have three more players come into the squad who have played at Under-18 level and now they have the chance to experience the senior level of the game.”
IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS Squad (2017 Elche 7s Tournament, Estadio Martinez Valero, Elche, Alicante, Spain, Saturday, October 28-Sunday, October 29):
Kathy Baker (Blackrock/Leinster)
Ashleigh Baxter (Cooke/Ulster)
Claire Boles (Railway Union/Ulster)
Jeamie Deacon (Blackrock/Leinster)
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock/Leinster)
Stacey Flood (Railway Union/Leinster)
Louise Galvin (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Katie Heffernan (Mullingar/Railway Union (dual status)/Leinster)
Eve Higgins (Railway Union/Leinster)
Anna McGann (Buccaneers/UCD (dual status)/Leinster)
Lucy Mulhall (Rathdrum/Leinster) (capt)
Audrey O’Flynn (Ireland Sevens)
Molly Scuffil-McCabe (Garda Westmanstown /Leinster)
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS Fixtures –
Saturday, October 28:
Spanish Invitational v Ireland, Estadio Martinez Valero, 12.50pm local time/11.50am Irish time
Ireland v Wales, Estadio Martinez Valero, 3.50pm local time/2.50pm Irish time
England v Ireland, Estadio Martinez Valero, 5.10pm local time/4.10pm Irish time
Sunday, October 29:
Ireland v Belgium, Estadio Martinez Valero, 10am local time/9am Irish time
Ireland v Spain, Estadio Martinez Valero, 12.30pm local time/11.30am Irish time
Final, Estadio Martinez Valero, 2.15pm local time/1.15pm Irish time
IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS 2017 Tournament Schedule –
Elche 7s, Elche, Spain – October 28-29
Dubai 7s – World Series, Dubai, UAE – December 1-2
Sydney 7s – World Series, Sydney, Australia – January 26-28
Kitakyushu 7s – World Series, Kitakyushu, Japan – April 21-22
Canada 7s – World Series, Langford, Canada – May 12-13
Paris 7s – World Series, Paris, France – May 9-10
Rugby World Cup Sevens, San Francisco, USA – July 20-22