Director of Women’s and 7s Rugby Anthony Eddy has named the Ireland Women’s 7s squad for the second stage of the Rugby Europe 7s Grand Prix in Kazan, Russia, this weekend.
Dual Buccanneers and UCD player Anna McGann is included having made her debut in Ireland’s final World Series tournament in Clermont two weeks ago.
The Kazan 7s is the final tournament for the Ireland Women this season, and a high placing finish will see them qualify for next summer’s Sevens Rugby World Cup in San Francisco.
Of the 13 players named in the squad, 10 were involved in the opening round of the Grand Prix tournament in Malemort, France, where Ireland finished in 3rd place.
Captain Lucy Mulhall, who was rested for the tournament in Clermont two weeks ago, returns to the side along with Louise Galvin.
Stacey Flood, Amee-Leigh Murphy-Crowe and Hannah Tyrrell are set to compete in their 8th Sevens tournament of the season, having been ever present since the opening stage of the World Series in Dubai last December.
Claire Keohane, Kim Flood, Katie Heffernan, Audrey O’Flynn and Megan Williams were also all involved in Malemort.
The three players who didn’t feature in Malemort are Claire Boles and McGann – both made their senior debuts in Clermont, and Katie Fitzhenry, who has recovered from the injury that has kept her sidelined recently.
Ireland’s Pool C opponents in Kazan are England, Sweden and Poland.
Ahead of the side departing for the Russia, Eddy said: “The squad had a good two weeks in France in June, finishing third in Malemort at the Grand Prix and then we had a top eight finish at the Clermont 7s, where we had three new caps.
“It’s been a progressive season for the Women’s Sevens Programme, so we will be looking to end it on a positive note in Kazan, where we will be looking to gain qualification for next season’s Sevens Rugby World Cup in San Francisco.”
Ireland Women’s 7s Squad for Kazan 7s.
Claire Boles (Enniskillen RFC/Ulster)
Claire Keohane (UL Bohemian RFC / Munster)
Katie Fitzhenry (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Stacey Flood (Railway Union RFC / Leinster)
Kim Flood (Railway Union RFC / Leinster)
Louise Galvin (UL Bohemian RFC / Munster)
Katie Heffernan (Mullingar RFC / Railway Union RFC (dual status) /Leinster)
Anna McGann (Buccaneers/UCD (dual status)/Leinster)
Lucy Mulhall (Rathdrum RFC / Leinster) (captain)
Amee-Leigh Murphy-Crowe (Railway Union RFC / Munster)
Audrey O’Flynn (Ireland 7s Programme)
Hannah Tyrrell (Old Belvedere RFC / Leinster)
Megan Williams (St. Mary’s College RFC)
Rugby Europe Women’s Sevens Grand Prix Series – Kazan 7s
Pool C – Day 1 – 8th July
Ireland v Poland – 10:00am (local time) / 8.00am (Irish time)
Ireland v Sweden 12:45pm (local time) / 10.45am (Irish time)
Ireland v England 3.53pm (local time) / 1.53pm (Irish time)
For more information on the Rugby Europe Women’s Grand Prix Series, click here.