From Parnells to Twickenham

By Damian Dolan.

In November 2011, Jenny Murphy trooped along to Twickenham Stadium to watch her first-ever women’s rugby international, England versus New Zealand. Less than three years later she’ll run out at Twickenham on Saturday evening for Ireland against England.

It’s been a rapid rise for Ireland’s centre, who won a an All Ireland Club Intermediate Football Championship with Parnell’s Ladies in 2012, having only taken up playing rugby in 2010 while attending St Mary’s University College in Twickenham.

A Grand Slam winner with Ireland in 2013, Murphy has helped Ireland make it two wins from two thus far – against Scotland and Wales – and that now puts them on a collision course with an England team that will need no motivation after Ireland humbled them 25-0 at Esher RFC in last year’s championship on their way to a first-ever Grand Slam.

With England, who up until last year had won seven Grand Slams in a row, also having won their opening two games, England v Ireland Part II on Saturday evening promises to be just as compelling and physically charged as the men’s encounter which precedes it. Neither side will be taking a backward step and Murphy is eagerly looking forward to the challenge.

For more see this week’s edition of the Irish World.

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