Ireland will take on Great Britain in the uncapped Softco Series in Queen’s University, Belfast, later this month in their first international matches on home soil since the Olympic Qualifier in December 2019.
The matches will take place on Saturday, March 13, Sunday, March 14, and Tuesday, March 16. BBC Sport NI will be streaming all three matches on bbc.co.uk/sportni as well as the BBC iPlayer, while RTÉ will broadcast Sunday evening’s match live on RTÉ 2 with coverage starting from 4.30pm.
Nigel Ringland will present BBC Sport NI’s coverage of the three matches and will be joined on commentary by former Ireland international Alex Speers; while Evanne Ní Chuillin will present RTÉ’s coverage, joined by Cliodhna Sargent and Gillian Pinder in studio, with match commentary from George Hamilton and Sarah Scott.
The three-game series will provide serious international competition for the Green Army ahead of a busy summer. Sean Dancer’s side head to Amsterdam in June for the EuroHockey Championships which will as the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup.
The Irish women are currently ranked 8th in the world and will take on the Netherlands, Spain, and Scotland in Pool A of the Championships.
Following that, the 2018 World Cup silver medallists head to Tokyo having secured their place in the Olympic Games following their victory against Canada 15 months ago.
“Given the past 12 months we are really excited to play these international matches at home”, captain Katie Mullan said.
“The squad has been training hard throughout which showed in our recent matches against Spain. They are a strong team and we recorded two wins and two draws out of the five friendlies, putting us in a confident position going into our next block of training.
“These matches against GB will be great preparation for the EuroHockey Championships this summer ahead of travelling to Tokyo. As current Olympic gold medallists, GB are an experienced and strong team, so this is a really good opportunity for us to put all the training into practice ahead of this summer.”