Connacht Women’s youths tri-series yielded tournament wins for Connemara-Dunmore (under18) and Ballina (under16). u18cupDunmore2The four-week series involved all four clubs (Dunmore unable to host through rain) and culminated in a Connacht Sportsground finals fixture over the weekend. Westport’s seniors succumbed to frenetic Dunmore-Connemara pace in the final, 10-5.

u18cupWestport1Connacht Rugby’s Domestic Rugby Manager Lyndon Jones presented victorious skipper Ciara Bowens with the hard-won trophy, the inaugural competition will likely become a calendar regular in the underage girls’ rugby schedule. Womens and youths officer Wendy Hickey said the response from all clubs involved showed a real clamour for competitive rugby at these levels. Miss Hickey said she would make every effort to expand the competition next season, and already had interest from two other clubs intrigued by the interest and exposure thrown up by the Tri-Series. Ballina proved far too strong for Westport in the juniors, skipping out early to 15nil and finishing 25 points ahead at the finish.u16cupBallina1

Captain Mairead Hopkins claimed the silverware for from Jones following the game. Hopkins, with Eimear Murphy, Tyra Marsh, and Kayleigh and Clodagh Hopkins, all featured with prominence, the pick of those on display. Katie Hughes led the defensive effort. (pics to come)


Gillian McDarby appointed IRFU Head of Women’s Performance & Pathways