Dave Passmore’s Junior Green Army will play a key tournament in their Junior EuroHockey Championship preparations at the Cantor Fitzgerald Four Nations at Serpentine Avenue.
With some mixing and matching in midweek, the side beat Canada 3-0 in their opening practice match with Jessica McMaster scoring twice and Michelle Carey also on the mark.Both are among an experienced spine with six of the 2017 vintage still in situ along with Erin Getty, Hannah McLoughlin, Abbie Russell and Ellen Curran.
Game two against the Canadians ended 1-1 with Siofra Murdock scoring the only goal. She was playing in her first game for Ireland having previously represented USA at underage level – her father is a lifelong Monkstown club member before relocating to the states.
The side starts their campaign in the tournament-proper on Friday against Scotland at 6.30pm in Pembroke before meeting India – who lost to the Irish senior side 4-1 in midweek – and then conclude the group phase on Monday against Canada. Classification matches take place on Tuesday.
For that panel, Passmore will be without the services of the injured Sarah Torrans as well as Leaving Cert students Caoimhe Perdue, Amy Elliott and Caitlin Sherin.
Emma Buckley looks set to be in the senior panel so Loreto’s Liz Murphy and UCC’s Hannah Humphries will take on the goalkeeping duties. The side will be co-captained by Erin Getty (Queens) and Cork Harlequins’ Michelle Barry.
It is part of the build-up to July’s Junior EuroHockey Championships which doubles as a Junior World Cup qualifier.
In that context, Passmore said it was great for his side to get quality international games under their belt at this stage in their programme: “It is an enormous boost for the team to have this support from Cantor Fitzgerald for the tournament along with shirts sponsors Eugene F Collins.
“Competitive matches tell us so much about players and how they react to given situations, and for us to be able to play this event in Dublin is largely thanks to both these sponsors and our fantastic parents’ group who have taken on much of the event organisation.”
Ireland Under-21 squad for Cantor Fitzgerald Four Nations, May 31 to June 4): J McMaster (Queen’s Univerisity), M Carey (UCD), E Getty (Queen’s University), H McLoughlin (UCD), A Russell (UCD), E Curran (UCD), L Murphy (Loreto), J Kilpatrick (Loughborough), S O’Brien (Loreto), L Foley (Catholic Institute), E Reid (Banbridge), G McLoughlin (Loreto), C Hamill (Loreto), Y Pratt (Muckross), M Jennings (Loreto), E Markey (Trinity), H Humphries (UCC), M Barry (Cork Harlequins), A Doyle (Ards)
Cantor Fitzgerald Four Nations Tournament Matches (Pembroke Wanderers HC)
Friday, May 31: India v Canada, 4.30pm; Ireland v Scotland, 6.30pm
Saturday, June 1: Scotland v Canada, 4.30pm; Ireland v India, 6.30pm
Monday, June 3: India v Scotland, 1.30pm; Ireland v Canada, 3.30pm
Tuesday, June 4: 3rd v 4th Play-off, 1.30pm; Final, 3.45pm