Six Nations: Ireland Women 21-3 Wales Women

By Nick WebbBBC Sport Wales
Highlights: Ireland Women 21-3 Wales Women
Ireland Women (15) 21
Tries: Naoupu, Spence Con: Briggs Pens: Briggs 3
Wales Women (3) 3
Pen: Wilkins

Holders Ireland opened their Women's Six Nations campaign on a confident note with a comfortable win over Wales on the artificial pitch at Donnybrook.

Centre Sene Naoupu and lock Sophie Spence crossed as the hosts led 15-3 at the break.

Two more penalties from home captain Niamh Briggs, who scored 11 points, were the only second-half scores.

Wales defended bravely for long periods, but could not add to Robyn Wilkins' early penalty.

Ireland benefitted from a string of penalties in the first half with Wales prop Megan York sin-binned.

Naoupu's run from 30 metres marked the stand-out moment before half-time.

But with heavy rain affecting the second half, Wales kept their line intact in the face of intense Irish pressure.

Ireland take on France in Perpignan on Saturday, 13 February, while the following day in Neath, Wales host Scotland, who lost 32-0 to England on Friday.

Ireland Women: Niamh Briggs; Elise O'Byrne-White, Aine Donnelly, Sene Naoupu, Mairead Coyne; Nikki Caughey, Larissa Muldoon; Ailis Egan, Zoe Grattage, Ruth O'Reilly; Sophie Spence, Marie-Louise Reilly; Paula Fitzpatrick, Claire Molloy, Heather O'Brien.

Replacements: Cliodhna Moloney, Lindsay Peat, Fiona Reidy, Ciara Cooney, Ciara Griffin, Mary Healy, Nora Stapleton, Jackie Shiels.

Wales Women: Adi Taviner; Elen Evans, Kerin Lake, Hannah Jones, Bethan Dainton; Robyn Wilkins, Keira Bevan; Megan York, Carys Phillips, Amy Evans, Rebecca Rowe, Sioned Harries, Rachel Taylor, Sian Williams, Shona Powell-Hughes.

Replacements: Amy Price, Catrin Edwards, Cerys Hale, Siwan Lillicrap, Alisha Butchers, Elinor Snowsill, Gemma Rowland, Dyddgu Hywel.