Irish Rugby

IRE v FRA Womens Six Nations 2021

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2 IRFU OFFICIAL MATCH PROGRAMME I am delighted to welcome you, virtually, to Energia Park as we rejoice at the playing of the fi rst home international women's match since October, broadcast live on RTÉ. It is fi tting that our opposition today are France, who stood in solidarity with us last year when they committed to travelling to Ireland to complete a fi xture that should have been played on their home soil. The fact that this fi xture ultimately did not go ahead, due to Covid issues, does not take from the fantastic gesture from the FFR, the players and management team, and it is my privilege to welcome them to Energia Park. The past twelve months have been challenging for everyone involved in rugby. The cancellation and rescheduling of fi xtures has been diffi cult, but our team and management have extracted many positives from these set-backs and started this campaign with a wonderful win over Wales last weekend. The work done in the 20 training camps over the past year was evident in a fi ne performance and I think we are in for a treat today, with two teams who have started strongly in this exciting tournament, which is enjoying its own international window and profi le for the fi rst time. The support of our sponsors and government in the past twelve months has been vital, and I wish to thank AON, the main sponsor of our women's team, and Canterbury our kit partner in particular. While there is still some road to travel in relation to COVID-19, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and I close by wishing you all well, remembering all those that have suffered from this terrible time and looking forward to the day when we can welcome you back to Energia Park. Stay safe, keep well and continue to look out for each other – for now we stand virtually #ShoulderToShoulder. Enjoy the game. Des Kavanagh President, Irish Rugby Football Union A MESSAGE FROM DES KAVANAGH President of the IRFU 2 IRFU OFFICIAL MATCH PROGRAMME

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