Coghlan rallies her team before taking on Scotland. ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan
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History in the making: Coghlan calls upon 'Fortress Ashbourne' in 6 Nations quest

The Irish women have already sealed a Triple Crown and lead the table with two games remaining.

FIONA COGHLAN, CAPTAIN of Ireland’s Triple Crown winning women’s team, is calling on her team to protect ‘Fortress Ashbourne’ as they now target a Grand Slam.

Philip Doyle’s side lead the Six Nations table after winning three games out of three.

On Saturday, they ran out 30-3 winners away to Scotland thanks to two tries from Alison Miller, one from Siobhan Fleming and a combined total of 15 points from fullback Niamh Briggs.

Next up for Ireland are the second-placed French who have already slipped to defeat to Italy, but despite the excellent run of form which resulted in Ireland’s first ever Triple Crown, Coghlan is taking nothing for granted.

“We never underestimate the French.” She told RTE’s Morning Ireland. “They’re top three in the world, they’re a phenomenal team.

“But we’ve put ourselves in a really good position with the results we’ve been having, particularly at home. It’s sort of been a ‘Fortress Ashbourne’.  So we’ll be really focused on that now.

“The pitch is absolutely fantastic. It’s really intimate, because the crowd are almost on the pitch with you. Sometimes I think if we were on a bigger stadium the crowd would be lost and wouldn’t be as much value to us when we’re on the pitch.”

With Italy (also on four point) travelling to face England in their next outing, the clash at Ashbourne RFC on the evening of Friday March 8 takes on the mantle of title decider.

In pictures: Ireland’s women capture first ever Triple Crown