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Teenage out-half Higgins included in extended Ireland World Cup squad

Tom Tierney has named a 48-woman group to prepare for the home tournament.

IRELAND WOMEN HAVE named a 48-player training squad to prepare for the home Rugby World Cup in August.

There are nine players previously uncapped in 15s rugby included in Tom Tierney’s extended group, including Railway Union’s teenage out-half Eve Higgins, who will do her Leaving Certificate in June.

Along with the injection of fresh faces is a group of 13 players who have previous World Cup experience, including Niamh Briggs, Sophie Spence, Ailis Egan, Nora Stapleton, Marie-Louis Reilly, Jenny Murphy and Claire Molloy.

Sophie Spence celebrates at the final whistle Sophie Spence is one of the experienced figures in the squad. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

A number of regular Ireland 7s internationals, including captain Lucy Mulhall and the pacy Amee-Leigh Murphy-Crowe, have been named in the Ireland 15s training group, which will be whittled down to the final World Cup squad in July.

Ireland will play two warm-up games against Japan in the coming months, while also travelling to Spain for a training camp with the Spanish national team.

Ireland’s World Cup campaign begins against Australia on 9 August in UCD, before further pool clashes against France and Japan. The knock-out stages of the tournament will take place in Belfast’s Kingspan Stadium and Queen’s University.

“The main goal for the coming months is to have our players as best prepared as possible for the World Cup,” said Tierney.

Eimear Considine, Kim Flood, Mairead Coyle and Ciara Cooney celebrate after the game Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

“It’s a huge opportunity for the players, and for the country, to have an event as big as this one on our door step and we want to give the players every opportunity to perform over the course of the competition.”

Ireland Women training squad for WRWC2017:

Forwards:

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Elaine Anthony (Highfield/Munster)
Ashleigh Baxter (Cooke/Ulster)
Anna Caplice (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Ciara Cooney (Railway Union/Leinster)
Jeamie Deacon (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Ailis Egan (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Laura Feely (Galwegians/Connacht)*
Jennie Finlay (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Paula Fitzpatrick (St. Mary’s College RFC/Leinster)
Orla Fitzsimons (St. Mary’s College RFC/Leinster)
Nichola Fryday (Tullamore/Connacht)
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)
Ilse Van Staden (Cooke/Ulster)

Backs:

Niamh Briggs (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Nikki Caughey (Railway Union/Ulster)
Eimear Considine (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Mairead Coyne (Galwegians/Connacht)
Nicole Cronin (Shannon RFC/Munster)*
Aoife Doyle (Shannon RFC/Munster)
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Kim Flood (Railway Union/Leinster)
Stacey Flood (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Nicole Fowley (Galwegians/Connacht)
Louise Galvin (UL Bohemian/Munster) *
Mary Healy (Galwegians/Connacht)
Eve Higgins (Railway Union/Leinster) *
Ailsa Hughes (Railway Union/Leinster)
Niamh Kavanagh (UL Bohemian/Munster)
Claire McLaughlin (Cooke/Ulster)
Alison Miller (Old Belvedere/Connacht)
Larissa Muldoon (Railway Union)
Lucy Mulhall (Rathdrum RFC) *
Jenny Murphy (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Amee-Leigh Murphy-Crowe (Railway Union/Munster) *
Sene Naoupu (Aylesford Bulls)
Deirbhile Nic a Bhaird (Aylesford Bulls /Munster)*
Nora Stapleton (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Megan Williams (St. Mary’s College RFC) *

*Denotes uncapped at this level

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