Loughran included in 20-player panel for GB ties

Graham Shaw has named a 20-player squad to travel to Bisham Abbey in England for a three-match series against Great Britain later this month.

The squad will face the world number 6 in three uncapped matches as they prepare for the Hawkes Bay Cup in New Zealand this April. Great Britain will prove stiff opposition as they recently returned from an impressive series against Australia, world number 3, and are the current EuroHockey champions.

Uncapped Sinead Loughran has been called into the panel. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Uncapped Sinead Loughran has been called into the panel. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Cliodhna Sargent returns to the panel following her wedding in January which saw her miss the most recent training camp in Spain. Sinead Loughran is the one uncapped player in the panel while Lena Tice and Zoe Wilson retain their places.

Speaking about the upcoming match series, head coach Shaw said: “Great Britain will give us a chance to see different combinations against top class opposition. Great Britain are a very strong team that are building for the Rio Olympic Games and this will be the perfect test for us before we head for Hawkes Bay. As a squad, we are really looking forward to getting back onto the pitch playing international games”.

Following the series in Great Britain, the squad will travel to New Zealand to play in the highly competitive Hawkes Bay Cup from April 2 to 10.

Fixture schedule (all at Bisham Abbey)
March 15:
Ireland vs Great Britain, 3.30pm
March 16: Ireland vs Great Britain, 4pm
March 17: Ireland vs Great Britain, 2.30pm

Ireland:
Ayeisha McFerran (GK, University of Louisville), Pamela Smithwick (GK, Old Alex), Yvonne O’Byrne (Cork Harlequins), Shirley McCay (Ulster Elks), Cliodhna Sargent (Cork Harlequins), Hannah Mathews (Loreto), Lena Tice (Loreto), Zoe Wilson (Syracuse University), Megan Frazer (Ulster Elks), Gill Pinder (UCD), Katie Mullan (UCD), Chloe Watkins (Hermes), Nicci Daly (Muckross), Nikki Evans (Hermes), Anna O’Flanagan (Hermes), Sinead Loughran (Hermes), Emily Beatty (UCD), Naomi Carroll (Hermes), Ali Meeke (Loreto), Deirdre Duke (UCD)

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