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Parsons starts as Ireland make four changes for Italy clash in Cork

19-year-old back row Aoife Wafer is set for her Test debut off the Irish bench.

Parsons is back on Ireland's left wing.
Parsons is back on Ireland's left wing.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

BEIBHINN PARSONS HAS been restored to the Ireland Women team to face Italy on Sunday in Cork [KO 5pm, RTÉ2] as Greg McWilliams’ side look for their first win of the Six Nations.

20-year-old wing sensation Parsons was used off the bench in the defeats to Wales and France but now returns in the number 11 shirt in one of the four changes McWilliams has made to his starting XV for the clash at Musgrave Park.

Fullback Eimear Considine drops out of the matchday squad altogether as Lucy Mulhall shifts to the number 15 shirt to make room for Parsons on the left wing.

Meanwhile, Kathryn Dane comes in for Aoibheann Reilly at scrum-half, Hannah O’Connor replaces Brittany Hogan at number eight, and Christy Haney gets her first Test start at tighthead prop in place of Katie O’Dwyer.

Aoife Doyle comes onto the Irish bench, which also includes uncapped 19-year-old back Aoife Wafer, a product of Enniscorthy RFC who now plays with Blackrock.

Ireland (v Italy):

15. Lucy Mulhall (Wicklow RFC/Leinster) 3 caps
14. Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe (Railway Union RFC/Munster) 8
13. Eve Higgins (Railway Union RFC/Leinster) 8
12. Stacey Flood (Railway Union RFC/Leinster) 9
11. Beibhinn Parsons (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht) 17
10. Nicole Cronin (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster) 18
9. Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster) 20

1. Linda Djougang (ASM Romagnat Rugby/Leinster) 19
2. Neve Jones (Gloucester-Hartpury/Ulster) 8
3. Christy Haney (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster) 1
4. Nichola Fryday (Exeter Chiefs/Connacht) 24 (captain)
5. Sam Monaghan (Wasps/IQ Rugby) 7
6. Dorothy Wall (Blackrock College RFC/Munster) 12
7. Edel McMahon (Wasps/IQ Rugby) 16
8. Hannah O’Connor (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster) 9

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Replacements:

16. Emma Hooban (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster) 10
17. Chloe Pearse (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster) 3
18. Katie O’Dwyer (Railway Union RFC/Leinster) 7
19. Brittany Hogan (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster) 9
20. Aoife Wafer (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster) 0
21. Aoibheann Reilly (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht) 2
22. Enya Breen (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster) 11
23. Aoife Doyle (Railway Union RFC/Munster) 7

Referee: Sara Cox [RFU].

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Murray Kinsella

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