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Parsons & Higgins named in Ireland’s Six Nations squad

Béibhinn Parsons, Eve Higgins and Aoibheann Reilly have all been included in the Ireland squad for the Guinness Women’s Six Nations.

The trio were part of the Ireland Sevens team that won gold at the HSBC SVNS in Perth last month.

Scott Bemand’s squad begin their campaign away to France on 23 March in Le Mans.

Also included are Sevens squad members Natasja Behan and Katie Heffernan.

Bemand, who took over following Ireland’s wooden spoon finish in last year’s Six Nations and led the team to WXV3 success in October, has named eight uncapped players in his 35-woman squad.

Ruth Campbell and Katie Whelan, who were part of the WXV3 squad, as well as Chisom Ugwuere, Katie Corrigan, Heffernan and Clare Gorman have all impressed in this year’s Celtic Challenge campaign and earn a first Ireland call-up

Ireland-qualified duo Andrea Stock, who previously played with Munster, and Shannon Ikahihifo, originally from New Zealand, are also included.

Forwards Sam Monaghan and Edel McMahon continue as co-captains.

Ireland beat Kazakhstan, Colombia and Spain at the WXV3

An additional seven players – India Daley, Kate Flannery, Hannah O’Connor, Maeve Óg O’Leary, Ivanna Kiripati, Leah Tarpey and Kayla Waldron – are included in the wider training panel.

Bemand said: “We are excited for this group of players who will represent Ireland in the upcoming Guinness Women’s Six Nations.

“The WXV3 and the Celtic Challenge preparation has been vital for our development and expanding our player pool.

“On the back of the success of the Women’s Sevens side, we are chasing potential through this group of players and we are all looking to perform in a high-quality competition.”

The coaching team for the championship has also been confirmed with Declan Danaher (defence coach) joining Denis Fogarty (scrum coach), Larissa Muldoon (assistant backs & attack coach) and John McKee (senior coach).


IRELAND SQUAD

Forwards (19)

Claire Boles (Railway Union RFC/Ulster)
Ruth Campbell (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)*
Megan Collis (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Eimear Corri (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Sarah Delaney (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Christy Haney (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Brittany Hogan (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster)
Shannon Ikahihifo (Ealing Trailfinders/IQ Rugby)*
Neve Jones (Gloucester-Hartpury/Ulster)
Sadhbh McGrath (MU Barnhall/Cooke RFC/Ulster)
Edel McMahon (Exeter Chiefs/Connacht) (co-captain)
Grace Moore (Saracens/IQ Rugby)
Sam Monaghan (Gloucester-Hartpury/) (co-captain)
Niamh O’Dowd (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Andrea Stock (Ealing Trailfinders/IQ Rugby)*
Fiona Tuite (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster)
Aoife Wafer (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Dorothy Wall (Blackrock College RFC/Munster)

Backs (16)
Natasja Behan (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Enya Breen (Blackrock College/Munster)
Katie Corrigan (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)*
Aoife Dalton (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Méabh Deely (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht)
Lauren Delany (Sale Sharks/IQ Rugby)
Nicole Fowley (Galwegians RFC/Connacht)
Clare Gorman (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)*
Katie Heffernan (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)*
Eve Higgins (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Dannah O’Brien (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)
Béibhinn Parsons (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht)
Aoibheann Reilly (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht)
Molly Scuffil-McCabe (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Chisom Ugwueru (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster)*
Katie Whelan (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster)*

Training Panellists (7)
India Daley (Blackrock College RFC/Ulster)*
Kate Flannery (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster)*
Ivana Kiripati (Tuam-Oughterard/Connacht)*
Hannah O’Connor (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Maeve Óg O’Leary (Blackrock College RFC/Munster)
Leah Tarpey (Railway Union RFC/Leinster)
Kayla Waldron (Railway Union RFC/Connacht)*
*Denotes uncapped players

FIXTURES

Saturday, 23 March: France v Ireland, Stade Marie-Marvingt, 3.15pm (Irish time) (live on RTÉ)

Sunday, 31 March: Ireland v Italy, The RDS, 3pm (live on RTÉ)

Saturday, 13 April: Ireland v Wales, Musgrave Park, 4.45pm

Saturday, 20 April: England v Ireland, Twickenham, 2.15pm

Saturday, 27 April: Ireland v Scotland, Kingspan Stadium, 2.30pm (live on RTÉ)

Follow the RTÉ Sport WhatsApp channel for the best news, interviews, analysis and features, as well as details of our sports coverage across all RTÉ platforms.


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