Ireland Women 15 - 3 Scotland Women
After dominating the field in the first half, Scotland missed the opportunity of a second Six Nations victory at Ashbourne this evening (Friday 19 March) when the home side scored twice in the second forty minutes.
A promising debut by Nicola Halfpenny and some great periods of play during the first half ensured that the Irish didn't come away with the score that they had been predicting and gave the Scots a solid basis on which to continue building towards the Women's Rugby World Cup later this year.
Despite a torrential downpour which only abated on the final whistle, the game began at a cracking pace with the Scots showing imagination and flair in attack and defence. Though the Irish put the first points on the board, through a penalty from fullback, Briggs, Scotland soon responded with a similar score, from newcomer Halfpenny whose footballing skills were to the fore throughout the evening, complemented by the juggling skills of fifty-capper Lucy Millard to keep possession.
Half time: 3-3
The opening twenty minutes of the second half saw the home side take control of the game with two tries coming at 42 (Stapleton) and 58 minutes (Ryan), the second converted by the Irish fullback after continued pressure on the Scots line and two chances taken.
Though the Scots fought back and contained the opposition in the own half for the majority of the reaminder of the match, no more points were to come. Folllowing an extended period of play after eighty minutes were up, the Irish kicked the ball into touch and the score remained in their favour.
Final score: 15-3
After the game head coach Gary Parker said: "Before the game we heard Ireland were going to beat us by 30 points. We controlled the first half and gave them a fright. Then we gave them two chances in the second half, which they took.
We've certainly made strides over this championship - we're more physical at the breakdown, we're starting to see things we've done in training actually working in the match and we're now in a position to move on. I thought tonight was a great step forward."
Scotland Women v Ireland at Ashourne, Co Meath on Friday 19 March (kick-off 7.30pm)
15 Nicola Halfpenny (Melrose)
14 Celia Hawthorn (Edinburgh University)
13 Lucy Millard (Team Northumbria)
12 Veronica Fitzpatrick (RHC Cougars)
11 Lynsey Douglas (London Wasps)
10 Tanya Griffith (RHC Cougars)
9 Louise Dalgliesh (RHC Cougars)
1 Heather Lockhart (Hillhead / Jordanhill)
2 Sarah-Louise Walker (Watsonians)
3 Gillian McCord (RHC Cougars)
4 Louise Moffat (Murrayfield Wanderers)
5 Lindsay Wheeler (Team Northumbria)
6 Lynne Reid (RHC Cougars) (CAPTAIN)
8 Susie Brown (Richmond)
7 Donna Kennedy (Worcester)
16 Sarah Quick (Murrayfield Wanderers)
17 Beth Dickens (Murrayfield Wanderers) (on for McCord)
18 Natalya Macholla (Stirling County) (on for Moffat)
19 Ruth Slaven (Murrayfield Wanderers)
20 Sarah Gill (Murrayfield Wanderers) (on for Dalgliesh)
21 Erin Kerr (Wasps) (on for Griffith)
22 Stephanie Johnston (Hillhead / Jordanhill)