Irish Women's rugby team look for positives despite losing out on Six Nations glory
France won the Six Nations last night with a victory over England10:49 Saturday 19 March 2016, 10:49 19 Mar 2016
As Ireland prepare for their final Six Nations fixture this weekend, a third Six Nations title in two years, is no longer a viable target.
Sitting in third place on the table on the back of defeats to France - won won the Six Nations last night- and England, they face bottom-of-the-table side, Scotland in Donnybrook tomorrow.
But despite the absence of silverware, there is still plenty to play for. Larissa Muldoon, who was there for Ireland's Six Nations wins in 2013 and last year says 2016 has been a season of gowth for Tom Tierney's side.
"I think this year has been a building phase and with any building phase you're always going to have your changes, but bringing the new girls into the structure and to the pace of the game has been important," the scrum-half maintained.
"It is massively challenging. There's going to be ups and downs but it's just about keeping as one. For me, it's about introducing the new girls to the game and giving them a boost and showing them how amazing it is to wear the green shirt."
Seven changes have been applied to the Irish side who beat Italy last week, with Muldoon and half-back partner Nora Stapleton both reinstated to the starting team.
There is also an opportunity for new players like Liz Burke, Clare McLaughlin, Elaine Anthony and Ciara Cooney to announce themselves as future prospects in this Irish team and keep the competition for jerseys strong in the coming seasons.
This is all part of Tom Tierney's rotation policy which Muldoon says is beneficial for the players.
"It's been something fresh. It's always challenging to play with new players. I love to challenge myself. You're always learning and that's the way it should be - you shouldn't become complacent.
"I think this year girls have been out of their comfort zone. It has been different but we need to look at the positives and we need to look forward.''
Ireland Women - N Briggs (capt); L Burke, C McLaughlin, S Naoupu, A Miller; N Stapleton, L Muldoon; R O'Reilly, Z Grattage, A Egan; E Anthony, C Cooney; C Griffin, C Molloy, P Fitzpatrick. Reps: C Moloney, F Hayes, F Reidy, O Fitzsimons, S Spence, M Healy, A Donnelly, K Flood.
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