The Olympic Games are on the horizon for Ireland, but for now the focus is on the EuroHockey Championships in the Netherlands for Sean Dancer's squad, where three World Cup spots and direct qualification for the Europeans in 2023 are up for grabs.
First up for the Irish will be a Pool A clash against the host nation on Saturday, followed by games against Scotland on Monday and Spain on Wednesday - all of which will be broadcast live on RTÉ2.
Should Ireland finish first or second in Pool A, two additional matches will be shown live on RTÉ2, with a semi-final on Friday 11 June and a medal match on Sunday 13 June.
If Ireland finish third or fourth in Pool A, two additional classification matches will be streamed live on the RTÉ Player on Friday 11 June and Saturday 12 June.
The opener against the Netherlands, currently the world's top-ranked side, is a repeat of the 2018 World Cup final meeting between the sides. The Green Army will no doubt hope fresh legs and a full focus on this date will close the gap from that day when the Dutch won out 6-0 in London.
Gillian Pinder was part of that Irish squad from three years ago. Speaking on RTÉ Radio's Game On, she said that the current squad should approach the game "with the intention of getting a positive result". It will be a tall order given that the Dutch have not lost a European fixture in normal time since 2011.
That said, Pinder is heartened by the more attacking style that coach Dancer is trying to implement.
"It's go, go, go with him, he wants to exert a lot of energy in a short period of time," she said.
"That's his mindset; he wants to be more attacking. Hopefully the girls can be on the front foot but at the same time be smart enough in conserving energy against the top teams."
Scotland are viewed as the underdog in the Pool, with Pinder emphasising that Ireland "need the three points" there, before what is likely to be a crucial game against Spain.
"That game against Spain will either send Ireland to the top four where they'll be competing for a medal, or, if they lose, they'll need to finish fifth overall to get that World Cup spot."
Euros bound ✈️— Green Army (@IreWomenHockey) May 27, 2021
Sat 5th June 3.30pm: ☘️ IRELAND v Netherlands 🇳🇱
Mon 7th June 12.30pm: ☘️ IRELAND v Scotland 🏴
Wed 9th June 12.30pm: ☘️ IRELAND v Spain 🇪🇸
(All times CET)
Fri June 11 and Sun June 13: Medal/classification matches#EHC2021 #GreenArmy #RoadtoTokyo pic.twitter.com/KZe5AsZ3E3
Thirteen of the Irish silver winning panel from 2018 will hit the turf at the Wagener Stadium with Deirdre Duke increasing that number as a late call-up as Sarah Torrans misses out on her first ranking tournament through injury.
Captain Katie Mullan leads out the side once again while the forward line will have a familiar look, with record goalscorer Anna O'Flanagan – 81 goals and counting – lining out up top with Duke, Nikki Evans and the returning Naomi Carroll, who is back after an ACL injury.
Michelle Carey is the fresh-face in this area of the field, the uncapped UCD player – a niece of GAA President Larry McCarthy – offering an exciting and innovative option. Her formal international debut will come against the Dutch in front a crowd of up to 3,500 having impressed in behind-closed-doors fixtures.
Chloe Watkins, Lizzie Colvin, Nicci Daly and Sarah Hawkshaw provide the midfield dynamism with Roisin Upton likely to join them coming out from the back.
Defensively is where much of the shake-up has been of late but Lena Tice, Hannah Matthews and Megan Frazer are all available having missed out on recent wins over the Scots.
Zoe Wilson and Barr twins Serena and Bethany miss out due to long-term injury, allowing the likes of Hannah McLoughlin to make a big impact. One of Ireland’s most accomplished players on the ball, she is another making her ranking tournament debut.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, this will be Shirley McCay’s eighth – and final – European Championships as she adds to her incredible tally of 306 Irish caps.
On the goalkeeping front, Ayeisha McFerran is likely to don the number one shirt with support from Lizzie Murphy in her second European campaign.
Netherlands v Ireland – Saturday 5 June at 2.00pm on RTÉ2
Evanne Ní Chuilinn is joined by Arlene Boyles and Gillian Pinder for live coverage of Ireland v the Netherlands from Amsterdam. Commentary from Hugh Cahill and Sarah Scott. Push-back 2.30pm.
Ireland v Scotland – Monday 7 June at 11.00am on RTÉ2
Evanne Ní Chuilinn is joined by Gillian Pinder and Kate Dillon for live coverage of Ireland v Scotland from Amsterdam. Commentary from Hugh Cahill and Sarah Scott. Push-back 11.30am.
Ireland v Spain – Wednesday 9 June at 11.00am on RTÉ2
Evanne Ní Chuilinn is joined by Gillian Pinder and Kate Dillon for live coverage of Ireland v Spain from Amsterdam. Commentary from Hugh Cahill and Sarah Scott. Push-back 11.30am.
Watch Ireland's EuroHockey Championships against Netherlands (Saturday 5 June, 2pm), Scotland (Monday 7 June, 11am), and Spain (Wednesday 9 June, 11am) live on RTÉ2 and the RTÉ Player, with live updates of the Netherlands game on RTÉ Radio 1's Saturday Sport