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Injury returnees and one uncapped player in Ireland squad for home World Cup

This is the squad carrying Ireland’s hopes in next month’s home tournament.

Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

IRELAND HEAD COACH Tom Tierney today unveiled his 28-woman squad for next month’s Women’s Rugby World Cup in UCD and Belfast.

Tierney trimmed his original 48-strong squad to 37 in June, though that number crucially did not include centre Jenny Murphy or prop Ailis Egan, who were nursing injuries at the time.

Murphy and Egan are duly included in the tournament 28.

Captain Niamh Briggs heads up the squad, having battled a troublesome hamstring injury over the past few months. She hasn’t lined out for the national side since November’s loss to New Zealand.

Scrum-half Nicole Cronin is the only uncapped member of the squad, but is one of a number of players with a wealth of Sevens experience.

12 players in the squad have previous World Cup experience from France 2014, with Briggs, Claire Molloy, Marie Louise O’Reilly and Nora Stapleton having also donned the green jersey at the 2010 edition.

Ireland will face Australia, Japan and France in Pool C on the 9, 13 and 17 August respectively in the UCD Bowl.

“We have named players who have been here before and are aware of the challenge that lies ahead,” Tierney said at the squad announcement.

“And then there are a number of players in the squad for whom this will be their first ever World Cup and I am extremely confident they will compete for starting positions througout the campaign.

“The players have been training consistently over the past number of months, and we have had a preparation that is far more comprehansive than previous campaigns.

“The anticipation and excitement has been building steadily amongst the players and the program has provided us every opportunity, so it is now up to us to put our best foot forward during this campaign.

“The opportunity to play in a World Cup on home soil is a once in a life time opportunity, and while we are in a tough pool with Australia, Japan and our Six Nations rivals France, I am sure the players will rise to the occasion in front of their home fans.”

Ireland Women’s Squad for 2017 WRWC

Forwards:

Ashleigh Baxter (Cooke/Ulster)
Anna Caplice (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Ciara Cooney (Railway Union/Leinster)
Ailis Egan (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Paula Fitzpatrick (St. Mary’s College RFC/Leinster)
Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Leah Lyons (Highfield/Munster)
Claire Molloy (Bristol/Connacht)
Cliodhna Moloney (Railway Union/Leinster)
Heather O’Brien (Highfield/Munster)
Ciara O’Connor (Galwegians/Connacht)
Ruth O’Reilly (Galwegians/Connacht)
Lindsay Peat (Railway Union/Leinster)
Marie-Louise Reilly (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Sophie Spence (Old Belvedere/Leinster)

Backs:

Niamh Briggs (UL Bohemian/Munster) — Captain
Eimear Considine (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Mairead Coyne (Galwegians/Connacht)
Nicole Cronin (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Jeamie Deacon (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Claire McLaughlin (Cooke/Ulster)
Alison Miller (Old Belvedere/Connacht)
Larissa Muldoon (Railway Union)
Jenny Murphy (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Sene Naoupu (Harlequins FC)
Nora Stapleton (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere/Leinster)

- Additional reporting by Sean Farrell.

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