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Nicole named in centre for Irish Ladies team

Nicole named in centre for Irish Ladies team

Irish rugby international Nicole Fowley pictured with her parents Pauric and Margaret after appearing against England last weekend.

Nicole Fowley retains her place in the centre on the Irish Ladies rugby team to take on Canada in the second game of the November Series this Saturday in the UCD Bowl at 2pm.

Sligo native Nicole, a daughter of former Leitrim senior footballer Pauric from Dromahair and Margaret (nee Clancy) from Glenade, keeps her place in a team that features ten changes from the team that lost 12-10 to England last weekend.

Paula Fitzpatrick will again captain the side from Number 8 and she will be joined in the back-row by Railway Union's Ciara Cooney and UL Bohemians' Anna Caplice, who will  be winning her first Ireland Women's XV cap, having previously represented her country with the Ireland Women's Sevens side.

In the second-row, Nichola Fryday will also win her first Ireland cap on Saturday. The 21 year-old UCD student plays her club rugby with Tullamore RFC and she will be partnered by Blackrock College's Katie Norris.

The Munster trio of Fiona Hayes, Zoe Grattage and Fiona Reidy will form a new-look front row. There are two changes in the backs, as Tierney names a new half-back partnership of Galwegians' scrum-half Mary Healy and Belfast-born out-half Nikki Caughey.

In the centres, Sene Naoupu will again link up with Nicole Fowley. Fowley won her first cap last week against England and they will have the same back three outside them as full-back Mairead Coyne and wingers Alison Miller and Niamh Kavanagh line out for the second weekend in a row.

In the replacements, hooker Leah Lyons, who was one of three players to win their first caps against England, will be looking to add a second to her tally if she is required from the bench. Also providing front row cover will be Ailis Egan and Lindsay Peat.

Elaine Anthony and Chloe Pearse are the other forwards on the bench and Larissa Muldoon, Jackie Shiels and Claire McLaughlin provide backs cover.

Speaking on the announcement, Tom Tierney said “There were lots of positives to take from last Sunday's game against England. While the result didn't go in our favour, the players will take a lot from the performance and we will be looking to build on this over the next two week against Canada and New Zealand.

“This weekend, Canada will present us with a new and different challenge. We know England well from playing them in the Six Nations, but this week's opposition are less familiar to us. They have a very strong rugby programme in Canada and were runners up at the last World Cup, so we will have to play smart rugby against them and stick to our game plan.

“We've two more new caps this week as well, so we're looking forward to seeing how Anna and Nichola get on in UCD.”

Tickets for the Women's November Series are on sale at:

The game will be streamed live via the Irish Rugby YouTube Channel (

Ireland Women v Canada Women

15. Mairead Coyne (Galwegians / Connacht)

14. Niamh Kavanagh (UL Bohemians / Munster)

13. Nicole Fowley (Galwegians / Connacht)

12. Sene Naoupu (Aylesford Bulls)

11. Alison Miller (Old Belvedere / Connacht)

10. Nikki Caughey (Railway Union / Ulster)

9. Mary Healy (Galwegians / Connacht)

1. Fiona Hayes (UL Bohemians / Munster)

2. Zoe Grattage (Highfield / Munster)

3. Fiona Reidy (UL Bohemians / Munster)

4. Katie Norris (Blackrock College / Leinster)

5. Nichola Fryday (Tullamore RFC / Leinster)*

6. Ciara Cooney (Railway Union / Leinster)

7. Anna Caplice (UL Bohemians / Munster)*

8. Paula Fitzpatrick (St. Mary's / Leinster) Captain


16. Leah Lyons (Highfield / Munster)

17. Lindsay Peat (Railway Union / Leinster)

18. Ailis Egan (Old Belvedere / Leinster)

19. Elaine Anthony (Highfield / Munster)

20 .Chloe Pearse (UL Bohemians / Munster)

21. Larissa Muldoon (Railway Union)

22. Jackie Shiels (Old Belvedere / Leinster)

23. Claire McLaughlin (Cooke / Ulster)


Women's November Series Fixtures / Results:

Sunday, November 13: Ireland Women 10 - 12 England Women, UCD Bowl

Saturday, November 19: Ireland Women v Canada Women, UCD Bowl, 2pm

Sunday, November 27: Ireland Women v New Zealand Women, UCD Bowl, 2pm

Next August, Ireland will host the Women's Rugby World Cup. For more information visit

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