Larissa Muldoon’s crucial try against Australia last Wednesday was met with an outpouring of joy by Irish rugby supporters crammed into the Belfield Bowl, but it also triggered a wave of congratulations from the GAA community.

The Donegal woman burrowed over for the host nation's first score of the tournament, as Tom Tierney’s side eventually held off the stubborn Wallaroos to earn a nerve-jangling 19-17 victory.

Muldoon works as a Games Promotion Officer for Dublin and her heroics had clubs across the county hailing a familiar face.

However hers is not the only link to Gaelic games, with veins of influence running right through this Ireland panel.

Another Donegal woman, Nora Stapleton, won an All-Ireland SFC Intermediate title back in 2010 before choosing the oval ball after a hectic period in which she committed to both sports.

Lining up in the Waterford team that Donegal defeated seven years ago was Niamh Briggs, the talismanic full-back so cruelly robbed of the chance to captain her country in this month’s World Cup due to an Achilles injury suffered in the run-up to the tournament.  

Briggs [above] came on as a 39th-minute sub for the Déise; Stapleton was summoned from the bench a minute later.

Flanker Claire Molloy, who was handed the captaincy after Briggs' withdrawal, played at corner-back for Galway in the 2005 All-Ireland senior ladies’ football final before a move to Cardiff to study medicine led her to rugby.

Full-back Mairead Coyne also played football for the Tribeswomen, while incredible all-rounder Lindsay Peat tasted All-Ireland glory when she helped Dublin to Croke Park ladies football success in 2010.

A delay to the team bus's arrival meant the Dubs had to start their preparations for the showdown with Tyrone in a pub close to the base at St Brigid's on the Old Navan Road, but it didn't stop them powering to a 3-16 to 0-09 triumph, with Peat chipping in with a point from play.

Alison Miller is another to have lifted championship silver. The winger was part of the Laois team that won Leinster in 2010.

Hannah Tyrrell only started playing rugby four years ago; her very presence at this World Cup is a tribute to her remarkable natural sporting ability and strength of character.

The Round Towers Clondalkin footballer took up a Sevens contract offer from the IRFU in 2014 having dipped her toe into the game with Old Belvedere a year before that. She hasn't looked back since.

Kerrywoman Louise Galvin [above] was never going to escape the draw of Gaelic football. Her namesake Paul is no relation but was a neighbour in their home village of Finuge. 

She shone with the Kingdom - winning a Munster SFC title and a National League - while also lining out in basketball with the UL Huskies

Galvin came into rugby with UL Bohs in 2013. Another incredibly versatile sportswoman, she graduated to Tom Tierney's set-up via the Sevens game, having the caught the eye on the wing, while Eimear Considine played camogie and football for Clare. 

Ireland face Japan this Sunday evening in their second Pool C collisions.

With two All-Ireland All-Ireland Ladies SFC quarter-finals down for decision on Saturday [Dublin v Waterford and Kerry v Armagh], and the men's All-Ireland SHC semi-final between Cork and Waterford throwing in an hour and 45 minutes before Tierney's team take to the field, expect The Sunday Game to be set to record in the Irish camp. Those links run deep.


Ireland v Japan, UCD Bowl, 5.15pm, Sunday 13 August

Ireland v France, UCD Bowl, 7.45pm, Thursday 17 August

Watch all of Ireland's games live on RTÉ Sport and the RTÉ Player (ROI only), listen live on 2fm and follow live blogs on RTÉ Sport Online and the News Now app.