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Ulster duo taking Irish break

By John Flack

Ulster players Chloe Brown and Gemma Frazer are to take a break from international hockey after declaring themselves unavailable for next month's prestigious Hawke's Bay Cup tournament in New Zealand.

And two other members of the squad - Katie Mullan and Nicci Daly - are to follow suit after they return from Down Under.

Frazer and Brown are studying at Ulster University and, with their final exams coming up, they have decided to opt out.

Brown has been having a good season in the Irish Hockey League while Frazer has impressed for the Ulster Elks, who made the end-of-season play-offs by lifting the Irish Senior Cup last weekend when the Ards striker was on the opposing side.

Brown has established herself after losing out on the World League II panel which missed out on Olympic qualification last June. The 21-year-old helped lift the European Championship in Prague the following month and has been first-choice ever since.

Frazer is a more recent arrival having made her debut against Scotland earlier in the season.

All four players are expected to be back in the squad later in the year as preparations for the next World Cup qualifying cycle get under way.

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