Ciara Griffin of UL Bohemian will captain the Ireland Women’s team who play their first game of the Women’s Six Nations 2020 on Sunday. Head Coach Adam Griggs has named a strong side to face Scotland in Energia Park.
Munster’s Aoife Doyle also starts while Nicole Cronin and Laura Sheehan of Bohs, are named on the bench. Doyle makes her XVs return after winning her first cap in 2015. She is joined on the wing by Beibhinn Parsons with Lauren Delany named at full back. Sene Naoupu and Michelle Claffey make up the centre partnership with Ellen Murphy at outhalf and Kathryn Dane at scrum half.
Up Front, Cliodhna Moloney is named at hooker and is joined by Lindsay Peat and Linda Djougang in the front row. Aoife McDermott and Nichola Fryday are named in the second row with Captain, Ciara Griffin joined by Edel McMahon and Anna Caplice in the back row.
Speaking to Irish Rugby TV, Griggs said:
“The preparation leading up to the tournament has been very good, We’ve got a lot of work done through January as a squad and at this stage everyone is excited to get the Six nations started and show the progress we have made.
“We’ve made no secret that last season’s results were not good enough and having a home game first up is the best possible way to start and put in a performance for ourselves and our home crowd. We want to make sure that Energia park is a hard place for travelling teams to come and play so we must put our words into action and apply pressure from the very start.
“Unfortunately, we have picked up a couple of injuries. Enya Breen and Eimear Considine picked up knocks at last weekend’s camp and will be out of this game. However having the likes of Aoife Doyle returning to the XV’s side is testament to the depth that we have built in the squad and also gives other squad members an opportunity to go out and express themselves and we have full confidence that those players stepping up will produce a quality performance.
“Scotland, first up, is a huge game for us. We are well aware what they can bring, and simply, we need to be on our game and deliver our best performance yet to get the tournament off to a winning start and build confidence in what this group can do.”
Tickets for Ireland game v Scotland are available on Ticketmaster.ie and will be available on the gate on the day.
Ireland Women Team & Replacements (v Scotland, Women’s Six Nations Championship 2020, Energia Park, Dublin, Sunday, 2nd February, kick-off 1pm)
15- Lauren Delany (Firwood Waterloo/ IQ Rugby)
14 – Aoife Doyle (Railway Union/ Munster)
13 – Sene Naoupu (Old Belvedere/ Leinster)
12 – Michelle Claffey (Blackrock/ Leinster)
11 – Beibhinn Parsons (Ballinasloe/ Connacht)
10 – Ellen Murphy (Gloucester-Hartpury/ IQ Rugby)
9 – Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere/ Ulster)
1 – Lindsay Peat (Railway Union/ Leinster)
2 – Cliodhna Moloney (Wasps/ IQ Rugby)
3 – Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere/ Leinster)
4 – Aoife McDermott (Railway Union/ Leinster)
5 – Nichola Fryday (Old Belvedere/ Connacht)
6 – Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemian/ Munster) Capt.
7 – Edel McMahon (Wasps/ Connacht / IQ Rugby)
8 – Anna Caplice (Harlequins/ IQ Rugby)
16 – Victoria Dabanovich O’Mahony (Old Belvedere/ Leinster)
17 – Laura Feely (Galwegians/ Connacht)
18 – Leah Lyons (Harlequins/ IQ Rugby)
19 – Ciara Cooney (Railway Union/ Leinster)
20 – Dorothy Wall (Railway Union/ Munster)*
21 – Nicole Cronin (UL Bohemian / Munster)
22 – Claire Keohane (Railway Union/ Munster)*
23 – Laura Sheehan (UL Bohemian/ Munster)
*Uncapped at this level
Ireland Fixtures, Women’s Six Nations 2020
Sun, 2nd Feb, Ireland Women v Scotland Women, Energia Park, Donnybrook, KO 13.00hrs
Sun, 9th Feb, Ireland Women v Wales Women, Energia Park, Donnybrook, KO 13.00hrs
Sun, 23rd Feb, England Women v Ireland Women, Castle Park, Doncaster, KO 12.45hrs
Sun, 8th Mar, Ireland Women v Italy Women, Energia Park, Donnybrook, KO 13.00hrs
Sun, 15th Mar, France Women v Ireland Women, Le Stadium, Lille, KO 15.35GMT/16.35 Local Time