Following a screening camp at the IRFU High Performance Centre, Head Coach Neill Alcorn has selected a group of 26 players to travel to Italy as an Ireland Women’s U20s programme is launched for the first time.
There are three senior-capped internationals included in the U20s squad, while a number of players who starred for the Combined Provinces side in the inaugural Celtic Challenge and for their Provinces in last season’s Vodafone Interprovincial Championshiphave been selected.
Niamh O’Dowd, Emma Tilly and Leah Tarpey bring senior Ireland experience to the U20s squad, while the likes of Clara Barrett and Kate Flannery have previously impressed for the Ireland U18s in Six Nations Festival action.
The squad will come together for a week-long training camp at the IRFU High Performance Centre on Monday, July 16, before travelling to Rome on Friday, July 21.
Alcorn’s side will train against Italy and Scotland at the Stadio Tommaso Fattori in L’Aquila, before going head-to-head in two 40-minutes matches on Friday, July 28, exposing the players to valuable training and match time against international opposition.
Commenting on the squad announcement, IRFU Women’s National Talent Squad and Talent Identification Manager, Katie Fitzhenry, said: “We’re delighted to name the first ever Ireland Women’s U20s squad ahead of the trip to Italy. We had 44 players at last month’s screening camp and the Coaching Team of Neill Alcorn, Larissa Muldoon and Matt Gill have selected an exciting mix of talented players from across the country, all of whom have impressed for their Club, Province, or at underage international level in a green jersey.
“It is a hugely exciting time for everyone involved and this is another important step for our Women’s Pathway, providing a platform for the further development of our best young players and exposing them to international rugby at an early stage in their career.”
Ireland Women’s U20s Squad:
Amy O’Mahony (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Caoimhe Guinan (Tullamore RFC/Leinster)
Hannah Wilson (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
India Daley (Cooke RFC/Ulster)
Ivana Kiripati (Buccaneers RFC/Connacht)
Jane Neill (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Karly Tierney (Tuam/Oughterard RFC/Connacht)
Maebh Clenaghan (Queen’s University/Ulster)
Megan Collis (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Niamh O’Dowd (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Ruth Campbell (MU Barnhall RFC/Leinster)
Sarah Delaney (Cill Dara RFC/Leinster)
Sarah Shrestha (Loughborough University/Ulster)
Sophie Barrett (Enniskillen RFC/Ulster)
Abby Moyles (Blackrock RFC/Leinster)
Cara Martin (Navan RFC/Leinster)
Clara Barrett (Ballina RFC/Connacht)
Ellen Boylan (Blackrock RFC/Leinster)
Emma Tilly (MU Barnhall/Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Eva Sterritt (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Kate Flannery (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Katie Whelan (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Kayla Waldron (Galwegians RFC/Connacht)
Laoise McGonagle (Galwegians RFC/Connacht)
Leah Tarpey (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Willow Bell (Sale Sharks/IQ Rugby).