The IRFU and Leinster Rugby have apologised after the Connacht women’s changing area was set up beside bins outside Energia Park in Donnybrook.
Connacht drew 12-12 with Ulster in their final Vodafone Women’s Interprovincial Championship game on Saturday to finish in third place, while Munster beat Leinster to claim the title.
Before their game against Ulster got underway however, the team were forced to change in tents outside of the stadium, which were located beside bins.
A Connacht player posted a video of their changing facilities on social media, saying “Wow, great job getting changed beside the dump. Don’t mind the rats.”
Just got sent this
Absolutely disgusting and disgraceful that the Connacht women had to get changed with the rats for the #WomensInterpros today
I’ve walked lyrical about this tournament but to see this I’m horrified
I’m lost for words at this
Equally Saddened & infuriated pic.twitter.com/Wh1cvBQbdg
— The 2nd Row (@the2ndRow) September 11, 2021
The IRFU apologises for an ‘unacceptable error’.
The IRFU and Leinster have now apologised for Connacht’s changing facilities, saying that it was an “unacceptable error”.
“The IRFU and Leinster Rugby would like to apologise to players, management and representatives of Connacht Rugby and Ulster Rugby and are sorry for the inconvenience caused by an unacceptable error in relation to the positioning of temporary changing facilities,” they said in a statement.
“Due to current government guidelines, changing facilities are not available for amateur rugby teams. These temporary facilities should have been set up in a more appropriate area.
“The IRFU and Leinster Rugby are extremely sorry for the inconvenience to the teams and the upset this unacceptable error has caused.”
— Connacht Rugby (@connachtrugby) September 12, 2021
Connacht Rugby responds to the IRFU’s apology.
Connacht released a statement of their own in relation to their side’s changing facilities, and accepted the apology issued by the IRFU and Leinster.
“Connacht Rugby acknowledges and welcomes the apology issued to our women’s squad and management for the changing facilities provided at last night’s fixture at Energia Park,” the statement reads.
“Connacht Rugby along with the IRFU are proud of the strides we have made with women’s rugby, and the increased backing and support we have given our players, coaches and volunteers.
“TG4’s live coverage of the Connacht women’s fixture was also a very welcome development – the benefits of which will be clear to see in both the short and long-term future.
“Finally, we’d like to thank this year’s playing squad and management for their incredible commitment since their first training session many months ago. They have represented the province with pride and we look forward to seeing continued development of women’s rugby in Connacht at all levels.”