Ireland just pipped France winning 13-10 at Donnybrook on Sunday for their third straight win of the Women’s Six Nations.
The hosts sit at second on the points table with only England ahead of them, both tied on 14 points. France are well below their rivals with six points at third place.
It was a quiet first half with as ended 3-0 to Ireland after fly-half Nora Stapleton slotted a three-pointer. She missed her first shot at goal but had another chance to redeem herself when French flank Romane Ménager was penalised at scrum time for holding onto the ball.
But the second half became a far more interesting affair when the wind dropped which allowed both teams to play with the ball more.
The visitors were the first to score a try when inside centre Elodie Poublan collected a loose-pass from the floor and gave it wide to outside centre Caroline Ladagnousn who nabbed herself a five-pointer. Full-back Jessy Tremouliere added the extras.
Ireland replied quickly though when they used a lineout well to create a maul. Second-row Sophie Spence was given the ball, running in the next pod who popped it back for hooker Leah Lyons to score.
Stapleton and Tremouliere would trade a penalty each after that, with the Irish number 10’s first-half penalty acting as the buffer between the two sides securing Ireland the win.
Pens: Stapleton 2
Ireland: 15 Mairead Coyne, 14 Kim Flood, 13 Jenny Murphy, 12 Claire McLaughlin, 11 Eimear Considine, 10 Nora Stapleton, 9 Mary Healy, 8 Paula Fitzpatrick (c), 7 Claire Molloy, 6 Ciara Griffin, 5 Marie Louise Reilly, 4 Sophie Spence, 3 Ailis Egan, 2 Leah Lyons, 1 Lindsay Peat
Replacements: 16 Ciara O’Connor, 17 Ilse van Staden, 18 Ruth O’Reilly, 19 Ciara Cooney, 20 Nichola Fryday, 21 Larissa Muldoon, 22 Nikki Caughey, 23 Louise Galvin
France: 15 Jessy Tremouliere, 14 Camille Grassineau, 13 Caroline Ladagnous, 12 Elodie Poublan, 11 Shannon Izar, 10 Camille Cabalou, 9 Jade Le Pesq, 8 Safi N’Diaye, 7 Romane Menager, 6 Marjorie Mayans, 5 Audrey Forlani, 4 Lenaig Corson, 3 Julie Duval, 2 Gaelle Mignot (c), 1 Lise Arricastre
Replacements: 16 Caroline Thomas, 17 Annaelle Deshayes, 18 Celine Ferer, 19 Laetitia Grand, 20 Yanna Rivoalen, 21 Lucille Godiveau, 22 Marine Menager, 23 Patricia Carricaburu
Referee: Sara Cox (England)
Assistant Referees: Beatrice Benvenuti (Italy), Helen O’Reilly (Ireland)
TMO: Sean Davey (England)