Host nation Ireland celebrated the first pool match of the 2017 Women’s Rugby World Cup with a 19-17 win over Australia at University College Dublin this morning (AEST).

Sydney University Women’s Rugby Club members Grace Hamilton and Ashleigh Hewson were both involved in the nail-biting loss, with Hamilton in the starting line-up and Hewson coming off the bench.

Each side scored three tries, with the Wallaroos missing two conversions. Hewson slotted the third after entering the fray and taking over the kicking duties.

The conversion took Hewson’s tally to 66, making her the highest pointscorer in Wallaroos history, surpassing former winger Tricia Brown, who finished her career with 65 points.

The Wallaroos are in Pool C alongside hosts Ireland, as well as France and Japan. Their next two pool matches will also be played at University College Dublin, against France on August 14, and Japan on August 18.

Other teams contesting the 2017 World Cup are New Zealand, Wales, USA, Italy, Canada, Hong Kong, France, Japan, England and Spain


Ireland 19 (Larissa Mulhoon, Ciara Griffin, Sophie Spence tries; Nora Stapleton 2 goals) defeated Australia 17 (Mahalia Murphy, Shannon Parry, Hilisha Samoa tries; Ash Hewson goal).