Speaking following the news that the IRFU turned down an invitation for the Ireland women's rugby team to take part in an Australian Test series, Green Party Equality Spokesperson Una Power said: “This is just the latest in a series of wilfully missed opportunities by the IRFU when it comes to promoting the women’s game. Last year the players were left shocked when the role of team coach was downgraded to a part-time position. Then we learn that they turned down the opportunity to have primetime TV spots from RTE for the Women’s Six Nations games. And now this.
“It must be incredibly disheartening to the players to be constantly cast aside by their organisation. Faced with only the cost of flights, how could the IRFU refuse such a golden opportunity? It is disheartening to the women and girls of this country that their sport is not even worth this to the IRFU. Devaluing our national team has a huge impact on young women who look up to them as role models and encouragement to stay involved in sport - young girls can't be what they can't see and the IRFU seem to be making sure the women's team can't be seen.
“The IRFU need to stop finding excuses and start prioritising actual development of the game. We need the findings of the strategic review of women’s rugby to be published and a comprehensive strategy plan for the development of the game to be implemented as soon as possible. There needs to be a real commitment to Women's Rugby, backed up by a substantial increase in targeted funding.”