Leinster’s U18 girls made a winning start of their campaign to maintain their unbeaten record in the Interprovincial development blitz when they beat both Munster and Connacht in well contested matches in Westmanstown on Saturday…

In blustery conditions, the girls took on Munster in the series opener.  After an evenly contested opening stage, the Leinster girls went ahead through a breakaway try from Railway Union RFC’s Stacey Flood – who was selected for the Ireland U18s Sevens squad recently.

This was followed by another superb score from Westmanstown RFC’s Molly Scuffil McCabe before Munster grabbed a breakaway try of their own before half time.  The second half saw lots of exciting rugby and excellent passing skills but the neither side got the upper hand and it finished 10-5 to the Leinster girls.

Leinster and Irish stars Nora Stapleton, Ailis Egan, Jenny Murphy, Sharon Lynch, Sophie Spence and Fiona Coughlan were on hand to cheer on the girls – featuring players from 12 clubs throughout the province – as they faced Connacht in the second game of the day.

Connacht put their eastern rivals under lots of pressure in the opening ten minutes before Hannah Rose Buckley of Wicklow RFC burst through their defence to score.  This was converted by Naas RFC’s Millie Sheridan. 

Hannah Rose nabbed a second try a few minutes later after Leinster worked the ball wide while Daisy Kate Earle added a third before the break after sustained Leinster pressure.

The opening of the second half saw Connacht dominating possession and territory but the Leinster defence held firm before Rosie Newton of Greystones RFC took off from the half way line and touched down in the corner.  The blustery conditions were unkind to the kickers and the final score was 22-0 to the Leinster girls.

The girls showed fantastic skills and were superbly organised, and they were deserved winners of both games of very exciting rugby.  All the hard work of head coach Laura O’Callaghan, forwards coach Sarah Duignan and backs coaches Aoife Thompson and Meagan Parkinson was handsomely repaid by the squad who now prepare for their final match against Ulster in Westmanstown on Saturday, 1 November.

Leinster U18s Squad:

Anna O’Neill, Aoife Murphy, Eimear Corri, Emma Hooban, Louise Scully, Roisin McWey,  Tara Buggie, Muireann Scully (Portlaoise RFC) Aoife Brassil (Kilkenny RFC) Caoimhe Molly, Daisy Kate Earle (Gorey RFC) Emma Lackey, Millie Sheridan, Nollaig McGuire (Naas RFC) Hannah Rose Buckley, Kayleigh Sullivan, Lauren Barry, Jess Hunt (Wicklow RFC) Jane Leahy, Sarah Murphy, Siofra Molloy, Katie Heffernan (Mullingar RFC) Jessica Weiss (Portarlington RFC) Kate Hegarty, Lisa Callan, Stacey Flood (Railway RFC) Maedbh Smith, Meaghan Kenny (Navan RFC) Mollie Scuffil McCabe, Jenny Bowler (Westmanstown RFC) Rosie Newton (Greystones RFC) Sophie Kilburn (Ashbourne RFC).