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Girls in green vying to bring back silverware


Gemma Gibney

Gemma Gibney

Gemma Gibney

Northern Ireland will undoubtedly feel at home in the Far East for the 10th Nations Cup. Singapore has been a happy hunting ground for the girls in green, who won the equivalent event six years ago in spite of being rank outsiders.

There are three survivors from the successful squad of 2009 including Graduates goalkeeper Gemma Gibney, who won Player of the Tournament then and is captain now.

The others are Larkfield captain Caroline O'Hanlon, who is set to become her country's most capped player next week, and defender Fionnuala Toner from Belfast Ladies. They are the highest ranked of the six competing nations and Kimber has been up-front in declaring Northern Ireland's ambition to return with the trophy.

Northern Ireland launch their campaign on Sunday against Botswana, who they defeated easily enough in the inaugural International Festival at Antrim Forum in 2013.

After that they face hosts Singapore, the second African outfit Namibia and wildcards Chinese Taipei on consecutive days before finishing against Papua New Guinea.

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