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Six Ulster girls make the Irish Under-21 squad for Junior Euros

 

By John Flack

Six Ulster players have been named in the Ireland Under-21 women's squad for the EuroHockey Junior Championship, scheduled for Valencia from August 28-September 3.

The Pegasus duo of Ruth Maguire and Taite Doherty are joined by Randalstown players Erin Getty and Alex Ogilby along with Queen's pair Jessica McMaster and Tori Hastings in the 18-strong panel.

Another Queen's player, Emma Kernohan, and Ards defender Alana Doyle are among those to have missed out.

Ireland have had an intensive build-up with a total of six games against Spain and Belgium over the past fortnight and earlier matches against England and Scotland.

Head coach Dave Passmore said: "The whole Under-21 group of 30-plus have worked really hard over the past seven or eight months and the final selection for Valencia was highly competitive."

Ireland play France, England and Germany in the group stages and will be aiming to stay in the top flight after successive promotions.

Meanwhile, the senior women's team have moved a step closer to reaching next year's World Cup after Argentina, who had already qualified, beat Chile to lift the Pan-Am Games title, thus freeing up an additional ticket to London.

Ireland have now moved up to second reserve and could have their place confirmed after the next two continental championships in Europe and Oceania, if results go to form and two more pre-qualified teams triumph.

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