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20th Apr 2023

The IRFU are allegedly dodging calls following major sexism claims

Clodagh McKeon

The backlash continues..

Last week, The Telegraph released an investigation claiming there is deep-rooted sexism towards women’s rugby within the IRFU.

Among the many issues uncovered, journalist reported that the organisation refused to negotiate flexible contracts with players.

She also found that players were denied protein during their Japan tournament and that the players weren’t told about their recent kit change. Instead, they found out through social media.

Another shocking revelation reported in the investigation was that a man high up in Leinster Rugby reportedly said: “Who gives a f**k about Women’s Rugby?” at a presidential dinner in March.

Since the report was released, Ireland coach Greg McWilliams has spoken out in defence of the organisation and said there is no sexism present.

According to Sky Sports he said: “What happened previously, I can’t stop people talking about. Talking about things historically, we can’t control external noise.

“It’s an interesting article but it’s nearly irrelevant at this stage. We’re moving forward and we have a great plan, we’ve got good resources. I absolutely believe in the direction we are going in and so do the players.”

“They won’t answer my calls”

The unnamed Ireland player that took part in the interview claimed players were dropped via email. She said some were even removed from mailing lists.

Susie Appleby, former England international and current coach for the Exeter Chiefs has spoken out and said that IRFU members are ignoring her calls.

She tweeted and said she’s made efforts to communicate with the organisation but no texts or calls have been answered.

The Chief Exeters have three players on the Irish squad including Clara Nielson, Edel McMahon, and captain Nichola Fryday.

Susie wanted to discuss the team’s mutual players but had no luck in getting through to anyone from the union.

During a discussion on Twitter about the matter, Susie wrote: “The IRFU won’t even answer my calls or messages I feel the frustration of all those in a green shirt and it should be the pinnacle of their career representing their country.”

The on-going claims against the IRFU have raised serious concerns about the well-being of the women players.

Related links:

Full team line-out: Ireland battle it out with France today in the Women’s Six Nations.

Full team line-out: Ireland take on Italy in the third round of the Women’s Six Nations today.

“Lots of it is historic” – Greg McWilliams defends IRFU after damning report about women’s rugby.