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Rugby: Donegal duo help Ireland to second win

Larissa Muldoon

Larissa Muldoon

LARISSA Muldoon and Nora Stapleton helped the Ireland women to their second 6 Nations win of the year on Friday night.

Ireland made it two wins from two in their Grand Slam defence with a 14-6 success over Wales at Ashbourne.

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Ballybofey native Muldoon was returned to the starting XV for the game having been used as a replacement in the facile opening day win over Scotland.

Muldoon and Fahan’s Nora Stapleton played the whole game as Ireland continued on their winning ways. A 61st minute try from Heather O’Brien was the big score as Ireland took another step in their bid to securing back-to-back titles.

The fact that they have yet to concede a try is testament to the way they have been going about their business, continuing to display the sort of defensive grit that was a hallmark of last year’s Grand Slam.

While Robyn Wilkins’ kicking gave Wales an early platform, Niamh Briggs’ penalty cut the gap just before the break and Brigg’s second penalty drew the teams level.

The pivotal moment arrived just past the hour mark when a scrum close to the Welsh line provided Ireland with an ideal platform.

Number 8 O’Brien displayed great initiative to gather the loose possession before driving over forcefully in the right corner for her second try of the Championship and another Briggs penalty from the 22 sealed the win late on.

Jason Gibson said that everyone had been left shaken but that things could have been much worse.

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