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Ireland women not overawed by England professionals, says Griggs

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(Reuters) – Ireland women’s team will not be overawed by England when they face them in their Six Nations opener in Dublin on Friday, coach Adam Griggs has said.

England, who won seven successive Six Nations titles from 2006, gave 28 players contracts this month but Griggs said his players cannot be worried about the disparity and must be ready for the challenge.

“In terms of the professionalism, the England squad have always had that depth anyway,” Griggs told reporters on Tuesday.

“There’s no bigger challenge than to open the Six Nations against England, they are second in the world for a reason and are a very good side who challenge you in every part of the game.”

Ireland finished behind champions France and England in the 2018 Women’s Six Nations Championship and Griggs will rely on captain Ciara Griffin, supported by Sene Naoupu and Claire Molloy, as they look to improve on their third-place finish.

“We had a good test against them in November and, while we didn’t get the result, we showed some of the standards and improvements that are required to compete at this level, which was a huge positive for us.”

Experienced winger Alison Miller, who broke her leg in last year’s Championship, has been named among the substitutes.

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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