Rugby Players Ireland – Proudly Representing Irish Women’s Rugby
In September 2016 Rugby Players Ireland were delighted to announce the expansion of its Player Development Programme to include the Irish Women’s 15s squad. Rugby Players Ireland had successfully been supporting the Irish Women’s Sevens programme since March 2014 and considered this expansion as a logical step forward.
The women players will be able to utilise Rugby Players Ireland’s extensive resources through a Player Development Manager dedicated to supporting the National Women’s Programme, Dr. Kate Kirby at the time, who’s role is now being undertaken by Nancy Chillingworth. Nancy’s role is to help guide and assist the athletes in undertaking educational, vocational and personal development opportunities. It encompasses areas like scholarship opportunities, media training and player wellbeing.
IRFU Director of Women’s and Sevens Rugby Anthony Eddy said:
“This is a great opportunity for our international 15’s players to be offered the player development services of Rugby Players Ireland, and is a further indication of the work being done to continue to align the National Women’s Rugby Programme.”
With women’s rugby now represented on both fronts and presented as a joint international programme Niamh Briggs, Irish Women’s fullback echoed the feeling among the players:
“We are delighted to be included in the player development programme offered by Rugby Players Ireland. Having access to their expertise and networks around the country will be of great value to our players. It is nice to be recognised as a part of Rugby Players Ireland’s membership and have services available to us that are on a par with those afforded to male players”