It may be October but the finals are already coming thick and fast on the Club & Community scene.

The Womens Invitational Cup and Plate finals will take place on Sunday, with Tuam RFC and Ballinasloe RFC playing host to the two fixtures.

In the Cup final OLBC RFC take on Westport RFC, with kick-off in Tuam at 1pm on Sunday. 30 minutes earlier the Plate final in Ballinasloe sees Buccaneers RFC face Galwegians RFC, with kick-off there at 12.30pm.

Also in the pipeline is the Shield Final between Ballina RFC and Sligo RFC, with a date, venue and kick-off time to be confirmed.

Best of luck to all teams involved.

The Connacht Women will be looking to finish the Vodafone Interprovincial Series on a high when they face Ulster Women at Energia Park tomorrow (k/o 5pm)

Here is the squad for that game, captained by scrum-half Mary Healy.

1 Julia Bauer Suttonians RFC
2 Moya Griffin Tullamore RFC
3 Shannon Heapes Cooke RFC
4 Eva McCormack Westport RFC
5 Fiona Scally Galwegians RFC
6 Meadbh Scally Blackrock College RFC
7 Emma Fabby Westport RFC
8 Kate Feehan Westport RFC
9 Mary Healy (C) Galwegians RFC
10 Nicole Fowley Galwegians RFC
11 Orla Dixon Galwegians RFC
12 Shannon Touhey Suttonians RFC
13 Catherine Martin Suttonians RFC
14 Ursula Sammon Westport RFC
15 Nicole Carroll Suttonians RFC
16 Lily Brady Westport RFC
17 Jessica Loftus Westport RFC
18 Elizabeth McNicholas Galwegians RFC
19 Aifric O’Brien Suttonians RFC
20 Ciara Farrell Tullamore RFC
21 Noreen Cassidy CYM RFC
22 Megan Walsh Galwegians RFC
23 Ava Ryder Railway Union RFC

The Connacht Women matchday 23 has been named for tomorrow’s Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship fixture with Munster at Musgrave Park.
 
Kick-off is at 7.30pm with live coverage on TG4.
 
CONNACHT WOMEN V MUNSTER – 19:30 SATURDAY 4TH FEBRUARY @ MUSGRAVE PARK
1 Julia Bauer Suttonians RFC
2 Moya Griffin Tullamore RFC
3 Shannon Heapes Cooke RFC
4 Eva McCormack Westport RFC
5 Fiona Scally Galwegians RFC
6 Ciara Farrell Tullamore RFC
7 Meadbh Scally Blackrock College RFC
8 Kate Feehan Westport RFC
9 Mary Healy Galwegians RFC (C)
10 Nicole Fowley Galwegians RFC
11 Orla Dixon Galwegians RFC
12 Shannon Touhey Suttonians RFC
13 Catherine Martin Suttonians RFC
14 Ursula Sammon Westport RFC
15 Nicole Carroll Suttonians RFC

16 Emily Gavin Ballinasloe RFC
17 Hannah Coen Sligo RFC
18 Elizabeth McNicholas Galwegians RFC
19 Faith Oviawe Buccaneers RFC
20 Emma Fabby Westport RFC
21 Noreen Cassidy CYM RFC
22 Megan Walsh Galwegians RFC
23 Órfhlaith Murray MU Barnhall RFC

We are delighted to confirm that a limited number of tickets are now on sale for this Saturday’s Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Series fixture between Connacht and Leinster at The Sportsground (k/o 2.45pm). 

 

This is a really exciting milestone for Connacht Rugby because, for the first time since February 2020, we are giving every supporter the chance to purchase a ticket to a rugby game at the stadium.  

 

Here’s all you need to know: 

 

What’s the capacity of the ground? 

As per current Government guidelines The Sportsground will be limited to 500 spectators.  

 

What tickets are available: 

Tickets are on sale via the link below on a first-come first-served basis. We’re expecting huge interest so book your spot before it’s too late. According to current guidelines and to maximise the space available, tickets will be sold in groups of 2’s or 4’s. 

For those that wish to purchase two tickets, your options are: 

  • 2 adults 
  • 1 adult + 1 junior 

For those that wish to purchase four tickets (limited availability), your options are: 

  • 4 adults 
  • 3 adults + 1 junior 
  • 2 adults + 2 juniors 
  • 1 adult + 3 juniors 

 

How much are tickets? 

€10 for adults / €5 for juniors (U16s) 

 

What will be different? 

Quite a bit actually! We’ve made a number of changes to ensure you can watch the game in a safe environment. 

  • Gates are open from 1.45pm and we would strongly encourage you to arrive at the ground as early as possible. 
  • All groups MUST arrive together and enter the stadium at the same time via the Clan Stand entrance. If your group’s tickets are scanned at separate times, you risk not gaining entry to The Sportsground. 
  • Masks must be worn at all times. 
  • On your e-ticket you will be designated a ‘zone’, and upon arrival to the ground please follow directions from staff. To ensure safe social distancing please enjoy the game from this area. 
  • There will be no smoking in any part of The Sportsground. Those who wish to smoke must exit the stadium and will not be allowed re-entry.
  • Look out for signs from our health & wellbeing partners Laya Healthcare which will direct you to the nearest sanitisation station. 

 

The Connacht Women’s management team have named their squad for the upcoming Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship.

This series marks the first time in nearly two years the Connacht Women’s squad will take to the field, after they reached the final of the 2019 Interprovincial Championship.

The squad will be captained by scrum-half Mary Healy with their opening game coming this Saturday against Leinster at The Sportsground (k/o 2.45pm).

Next up will be a trip to Musgrave Park on Saturday 4th September to face Munster, before heading to Energia Park for a series finale against Ulster the following week.

Further details on the squad can be found HERE

CONNACHT WOMEN SQUAD 2021

Aifric O’Brien
Ava Ryder
Catherine Martin
Ciara Farrell
Darwyn O’Halloran
Elizabeth McNicholas
Ellen Taite
Emily Gavin
Emma Fabby
Eva McCormack
Faith Oviawe
Fiona Scally
Grace Brown Moran
Hannah Coen
Jessica Loftus
Julia Bauer
Kate Feehan
Lily Brady
Mary Healy (Captain)
Meadbh Scally
Megan Walsh
Moya Griffin
Muireann Cawley
Niamh O’Grady
Nicole Carroll
Nicole Fowley
Noreen Cassidy
Orla Dixon
Órfhlaith Murray
Rebecca Gavin
Rhiann Heery
Shannon Heapes
Shannon Touhey
Sinead Rigney
Ursula Sammon

Head Coach: Ross Mannion
Backs Coach: Lyndon Jones
Defence Coach / Video Analysis: Guilherme Coghetto
Physio: Andy Moran
S&C: Ann Caffrey
Team Manager: Mark ‘Barney’ Moran

Fixtures have been confirmed for the 2021 Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship with the competition set to be televised for the first time.
 
All six games will be broadcast free-to-air on TG4 while the three Ulster Rugby matches will be streamed live on BBC iPlayer.
 
Round 3 of the competition will now take place as an exciting double header at Energia Park to ensure a televised audience for the province who’ll be lifting the trophy in 2021.
 
Speaking about the announcement, IRFU Women’s Development Manager Amanda Greensmith said:
 
We’re very excited that the Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship will reach a televised audience for the first time in 2021. It’s a competition that has been sorely missed from the sporting calendar over the past two years and we’re delighted that Vodafone are on board to help take us to new heights.
 
As we continue to promote our message of #NothingLikeIt, it presents a fresh opportunity to attract women and girls to rugby. We can’t wait to see the women of our four proud provinces return to action.”

 
TG4 Head of Sport, Rónán Ó Coisdealbha said:
 
“TG4 is delighted to bring the 2021 Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship to Irish television viewers for the very first time. We are looking forward to seeing this exciting competition become part of our Rugbaí Beo line-up. TG4 is proud to lead the way in the broadcasting of women’s sport in Ireland and ensures that women’s sport is front, centre, and free to air for television audiences.”
 
Neil Brittain, Executive Editor BBC Sport NI, said:
 
“I am pleased that BBC Sport NI is working in partnership with the IRFU and TG4 to broadcast the Women’s Interprovincial Championship live for the first time. We look forward to showing the Ulster matches on BBC iPlayer and to telling the story of the players representing their Province across TV, radio and online. We are also committed to ensuring that this competition becomes a permanent part of the broadcast schedule going forward.”
 
Saturday August 28th, 2021
Connacht v Leinster, The Sportsground, 14:30 (TG4)
Ulster v Munster, Kingspan Stadium, 16:45 (TG4, BBC iPlayer)
Saturday September 4th, 2021
Leinster v Ulster, Energia Park, 17:00 (TG4, BBC iPlayer)
Munster v Connacht, Musgrave Park, 19:30 (TG4)
Saturday September 11th, 2021
Connacht v Ulster, Energia Park, 17:00 (TG4, BBC iPlayer)
Leinster v Munster, Energia Park, 19:30 (TG4)

Connacht Rugby have launched a new Women’s U21 Rugby Initiative, with registration open now for all clubs.
 
The initiative, which consists of a five weeks of games at U21 level between participating teams, is designed to ‘bridge the gap’ between youth rugby and adult rugby for female players in the province.
 
This is particularly important ahead of the 2021/22 season, given many players missed the opportunity to play games during their final season at youth level due to COVID-19.
 
The focus will primarily be on fun and player development while still maintaining a competitive element.
 
Games will be played with 10 a side over a five week period. The aim is to give each team a minimum of 2 round robin games + a finals day where all teams will take part. Games will be kept as local as possible for the participating teams, with final schedules to be confirmed once all team entries are received.
 
Females born in 2001, 2002 or 2003 (provided they have reached their 18th birthday) are eligible to play, with the first round of games due to be played on the 17th/18th July.
 
The deadline for clubs to enter is 1st July 2021, and we would encourage all clubs to only register when they have a reasonable understanding of their likely player numbers and commitment levels.
 

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER YOUR CLUB

With a growth in the number of girls playing rugby in Connacht, we are delighted to announce the Connacht Rugby’s Women’s U18’s and Women’s Senior Coaches.

Ross Mannion has been appointed Head Coach of the Connacht Rugby Senior Women’s Team, sponsored by Genesys, accompanied by Lyndon Jones as Backs Coach.

Ross was Head Coach of the AIL 2C winning Sligo team, he has worked with Connacht Rugby as a Club and Community Rugby Officer for 10 years and in his current position as Rugby Participation Officer for 2 years.

“I’m delighted with the opportunity to take on this position, I`ve worked with some of the current players many years ago when some of them were starting out on their pathway and have got to know some more through various programs they`ve delivered on these past two years.

The main things that have stood out for me, from these interactions, are their commitment to rugby, be that for club, province or country, and the appetite to learn and better themselves as players. Two fantastic characteristics to have in life never mind in a sporting context, so that really intrigued me as to what the potential is with in the current U18, Emerging Talent and Senior squads.

I hope myself along with all the coaches involved can help all these players reach their potential and fulfil their rugby ambitions or goals.”

Fraser Gow returns as Head Coach of the Connacht Rugby U18’s Team, sponsored by GMIT, alongside Luke O’Donnell as Backs Coach. Fraser expressed his excitement of returning to training and getting back to normal, “First and foremost we are really excited about a return to training, having the ability to get back out on a pitch and un-pause the plans we have in place.”

“It’s fantastic to see examples of players that have been developed by our clubs, progressed through the Connacht pathways and are now playing at the highest level. That is something we should all be extremely proud of but equally motivates us to aid the development of the next crop of talented players out there.”

As Connacht Rugby continue their partnership with Galway-based sports technology services company Clubforce, their Emerging Talent Programme helps bridge the gap between underage and senior level women’s rugby in Connacht.

Clubforce Emerging Talent Head Coach, Emer O’Dowd, is joined by Mary Healy, who has been appointed, Backs, Skills and Attack’s Coach.

Mary Healy adds that despite restrictions, Connacht Rugby aim for this year’s programme to be the most comprehensive yet.

“Every year we’ve always tried to improve and push what we can do in the summer programme. Despite restrictions, we aim for this to be the most comprehensive yet.”

“I’m delighted to be involved with the Clubforce Emerging Talent Squad, I’m looking forward to helping bridge that gap between underage & senior, keeping girls in the game, growing and developing their skills and knowledge so they can take that step up to senior level. My goal and Clubforce’s goal ultimately is to grow participation, this partnership gives us the opportunity to bridge that gap, keep girls in the game and grow and develop them as rugby players.”

Speaking on the appointed coaching team this year, Joe Gorham Head of Domestic Rugby at Connacht Rugby said:

“Absolutely delighted with the appointment of Ross Mannion as Head Coach of the Connacht Women’s Team. Ross, a valued member of the Club & Community team, has an impressive coaching CV built up in the past few seasons and I look forward to seeing him (and his coaching team) bringing the Senior squad to another level.

I am also delighted on the re-appointment of Fraser Gow and his Coaching Team to the Connacht Under 18 Girls squad. Under his leadership, we have made tremendous progress at this level and it is refreshing to see so many young talented girls coming through to the Connacht side from the 4 corners of the 5 counties!

It is fabulous to see that the Clubforce Emerging Talent Programme is ready to get up and running again under the safe hands of Emer O’Dowd and Mary Healy. This sector is vital to the Player Pathway programme for the Women’s Game and huge thanks must go to our valued partners Clubforce for supporting the Talent Programme.

Finally special thanks to our Volunteer Managers of the three squads Natalie Fox & Mark (Barney) Moran. Without their help and assistance, and indeed their passion for Connacht Rugby in general, we would not have made the huge strides that we have made in the past few seasons. Volunteers are the backbone of everything we do in Club & Community. Thank you to every club & school volunteer, we really appreciate all you do for us.”

Following the success of last year’s event, ‘Gain in the Game’ is back for 2020.
 
Gain in the Game is an opportunity for teenage female rugby players, and their parents, to gather together for one informative day that will help the players improve both on and off the field.
 

 
It all takes place on from 10am-3.30pm on Saturday 29th February at the Sportsground with four speakers. Connacht Rugby physiotherapist Rachel Wyer, Connacht Academy nutritionist Sophie Conroy, Personal Development Officer Aidan O’Flynn, and former Irish internationsl Alison Miller.
 
Each speaker will share his or her knowledge in their area of expertise, all with the aim of empowering the players and parents.
 
Registration is FREE, all you have to do is fill out the form below and we’ll see you there.
 

Ireland Women’s Head Coach Adam Griggs has named a squad of 24 ahead of their test match against Wales this Sunday (10th November, kick-off 1pm)
 
The Squad are fresh off the back of two training weekends in Scotland and in France where they had games against their Scottish and French counterparts.
 
Griggs has named six uncapped in the squad, Leinster’s Judy Bobbett, Victoria Dabanovich O’Mahony, Hannah O’Connor, Katie O’Dwyer and Niamh Ní Dhroma along with Ireland 7s International and Munster’s Dorothy Wall.
 
Speaking ahead of the game, Griggs said “The camps in Scotland and France were invaluable, it gave us a chance to get quality time together as a squad and feed more information in to the players about how we want to go about playing and performing this season.
 
We were able to travel with a larger playing panel for each camp which gave all the players named in our initial squad the opportunity to put their hand up for selection which has driven our standards and made sure there’s been high quality competition for places in this test match squad named.
 
Ultimately we have picked a strong squad with a good mix of youth and experience who we feel can go out and deliver against Wales.”
 
Ireland Women’s Squad to play Wales Women (Women’s International, Sunday 10th November 2019, Kick-off 1pm)
Judy Bobbett (Blackrock College/ Leinster) *
Enya Breen (UL Bohemian/ Munster)
Anna Caplice (Harlequins/IQ)
Michelle Claffey (Blackrock College/ Leinster)
Eimear Considine (UL Bohemian/ Munster)
Nicole Cronin (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Victoria Dabanovich O’Mahony (Old Belvedere/Leinster) *
Kathryn Dane (Old Belvedere/Ulster)
Lauren Delany (Firwood Waterloo/ IQ)
Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere/Leinster)
Laura Feely (Galweigians/ Connacht)
Nichola Fryday (Old Belvedere/ Connacht)
Ciara Griffin (UL Bohemian/ Munster)
Edel McMahon (Wasps/Connacht)
Cliodhna Moloney (Wasps/IQ)
Larissa Muldoon (Railway Union/Leinster)
Ellen Murphy (Gloucester-Hartpury/ IQ)
Hannah O’Connor (Blackrock College/ Leinster) *
Katie O’Dwyer (Railway Union/ Leinster) *
Anne-Marie O’Hora (Galweigians/ Connacht)
Beibhinn Parsons (Ballinasloe/ Connacht)
Dorothy Wall (Fethard/ Munster) *
Sene Naoupu (Old Belvedere/ Leinster)
Niamh Ní Dhroma (Old Belvedere/Leinster) *

November Internationals Fixture:
Ireland Women v Wales Women
The Bowl, UCD, Dublin.
Sunday 10th November 2019
KO: 1.00pm

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