Ireland Women’s head coach Adam Griggs has named a squad of 37 ahead of their busy November schedule, which will see them travel to Scotland and France for training and practice games ahead of a November 10 Test against Wales at the UCD Bowl.
There are 10 uncapped players who have been included after an impressive IRFU Women’s Interprovincial Championship which saw Leinster overcome Connacht in a hard-fought final at Energia Park last Saturday evening.
Leinster’s Judy Bobbett, Victoria Dabanovich-O’Mahony, Grace Miller, Niamh Ni Dhroma and Katie O’Dwyer have all earned Ireland selection. They are joined by Shannon Touhey from Connacht and Munster’s Dorothy Wall who also make their first appearances in a national squad.
Mary Healy, a former Leinster Under-18 player who is currently studying at Lindenwood University in Missouri, USA, was invited to national training camps throughout the summer while home and, as part of the IQ Rugby programme, has been tracked and identified to come back into the IRFU national set-up.
Speaking about the squad announcement, Griggs said:
We are really excited to announce our squad for the season ahead. The Interpros have identified some brilliant talent, and with the extended games and finals series, players had the opportunity to show their skill and grow throughout the competition.
“It has been a very tough selection process and we have picked players purely on form. We are confident we have a really strong group to take us through this autumn. Shannon Touhey from Connacht had an outstanding series, helping them to the final, and she now gets the opportunity to come into the national squad to develop her all round game.
“Leinster’s Hannah O’Connor, who has been part of the national set-up now for over a year, also stood out for her performances during the Interpros and will be striving to earn her first cap for country.
“There’s a good mix of youth and experience throughout the squad which will drive our standards and make sure there is high quality competition for places as we head towards the Six Nations and the 2021 Rugby World Cup qualifiers next summer.”
The Ireland Women have a busy few weeks ahead, preparing for the November 10 clash with Wales at the UCD Bowl (kick-off 1pm). They have two away training camps, which will include training games against Scotland (October 26-27) and France (November 2-3).
IRELAND WOMEN’S Squad (2019 November Training Camps & Test v Wales):
Judy Bobbett (Blackrock/Leinster) *
Enya Breen (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Anna Caplice (Harlequins/IQ Rugby)
Michelle Claffey (Blackrock/Leinster)
Eimear Considine (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Ciara Cooney (Railway Union/Leinster)
Nicole Cronin (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Victoria Dabanovich-O’Mahony (Old Belvedere/Leinster) *
Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere/Ulster)
Lauren Delany (Firwood-Waterloo Ladies/ IQ Rugby)
Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Laura Feely (Galweigians/Connacht)
Nichola Fryday (Old Belvedere/Connacht)
Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemians/Munster) (capt)
Mary Healy (Lindenwood University/IQ Rugby) *
Ailsa Hughes (Railway Union/Leinster)
Claire Keohane (Railway Union/Munster) *
Leah Lyons (Harlequins/IQ Rugby)
Aoife McDermott (Railway Union/Leinster)
Claire McLaughlin (Old Belvedere/Ulster)
Edel McMahon (Wasps/Connacht)
Grace Miller (Old Belvedere/Leinster) *
Cliodhna Moloney (Wasps/IQ Rugby)
Larissa Muldoon (Railway Union/Leinster)
Ellen Murphy (Gloucester-Hartpury/IQ Rugby)
Sene Naoupu (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Niamh Ni Dhroma (Old Belvedere/Leinster) *
Hannah O’Connor (Blackrock/Leinster) *
Katie O’Dwyer (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Anne-Marie O’Hora (Galweigians/Connacht)
Beibhinn Parsons (Ballinasloe/Connacht)
Lindsay Peat (Railway Union/Leinster)
Laura Sheehan (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Juliet Short (Railway Union/Leinster)
Shannon Touhey (Galwegians/Connacht) *
Dorothy Wall (Fethard & District/Munster) *
Megan Williams (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
* Denotes uncapped player at this level
IRELAND WOMEN’S SCHEDULE – KEY DATES:
October 26-27: Training Camp & Game, Scotland
November 2-3: Training Camp & Game, France
Sunday, November 10: Ireland Women v Wales Women, UCD Bowl, 1pm
2020 Women’s Six Nations Championship:
Sunday, February 2: Ireland Women v Scotland Women, Energia Park, 1pm
Sunday, February 9: Ireland Women v Wales Women, Energia Park, 1pm
Sunday, February 23: England Women v Ireland Women, Castle Park, Doncaster, 12.45pm
Sunday, March 8: Ireland Women v Italy Women, Energia Park, 1pm
Sunday, March 15: France Women v Ireland Women, Le Stadium Villeneuve d’Acsq, Lille, 4.35pm local time/3.35pm Irish time