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Dublin: 6 °C Monday 16 December, 2019

Kathryn Dane handed first Ireland start for Saturday's clash with Italy

Adam Griggs has made one change to his side for the meeting with the Italians in Parma.

Kathryn Dane starts for Ireland against Italy.
Kathryn Dane starts for Ireland against Italy.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

THE IRELAND WOMEN’S team for Saturday evening’s Six Nations meeting with Italy in Parma [KO 6.45pm, RTÉ 2] shows one change from the side that overcame Scotland last time out.

Kathryn Dane, who made her debut off the bench in the defeat to England, has been drafted in for her first start. The scrum-half comes into the team at the expense of Alisa Hughes, who drops to the bench.

Included in a matchday squad for the first time in this year’s championship are Lindsay Peat and Laura Sheehan, who are both among the replacements.

Ireland rebounded from their opening-round loss to England by winning away to Scotland. For the Italians, victory in Scotland was followed by a draw at home to Wales.

“It was great to come away with five points after the Scotland test,” said Ireland head coach Adam Griggs. “It was a physical game in tough conditions, but the players were focused on putting in a good team performance together and showing the quality rugby they can produce.

“We were pleased with the opportunities that we created and while the challenge for this group is to become even more clinical under pressure, we definitely feel each week we are improving and taking the right steps to get there.

“The Italian game should be a cracker. They have played well of late and are unbeaten so far in this championship, which isn’t easy to do.

“We have been preparing diligently and know they have quality footballers that will put you under real pressure. We will need to be aware of these and look to close them down early if we are to get any success this Saturday night.”

Ireland (v Italy):

15. Lauren Delany (Firwood Waterloo/IQ Rugby)
14. Eimear Considine (UL Bohemians/Munster)
13. Sene Naoupu (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
12. Michelle Claffey (Blackrock/Leinster)
11. Alison Miller (Old Belvedere/Connacht)
10. Nicole Fowley (Galwegians/Connacht)
9. Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere/Ulster)

1. Laura Feely (Galwegians/Connacht)
2. Emma Hooban (St Mary’s College/Leinster)
3. Leah Lyons (Harlequins)
4. Aoife McDermott (Railway Union/Leinster)
5. Nichola Fryday (Galwegians/Connacht)
6. Anna Caplice (Richmond)
7. Claire Molloy (Wasps)
8. Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemians/Munster — captain)


16. Deirbhile Nic A Bhaird (UL Bohemian/Munster)
17. Lindsay Peat (Railway Union/Leinster)
18. Fiona Reidy (UL Bohemians/Munster)
19. Claire Boles (Railway Union/Ulster)
20. Claire McLaughlin (Old Belvedere/Ulster)
21. Ailsa Hughes (Railway Union/Leinster)
22. Ellen Murphy (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
23. Laura Sheehan (UL Bohemians/Munster)

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About the author:

Paul Dollery

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