Former Ireland out-half Niamh Briggs has been appointed as assistant coach to the Ireland Women's team.

The 57 times capped Waterford native joins up with new head coach Greg McWilliams, who took over at the end of the November series.

"I am delighted to come on board as an assistant coach as part of Greg’s coaching team," said Briggs, who won two Six Nations championships with Ireland.

"I worked with Greg during my playing career and while it is early days in his tenure, I believe he is building something really exciting as we strive to move Irish Women’s rugby forward, both at a domestic and international level.

"I am excited to get started, to work with Greg and the rest of the management team, and to get to know the players as we build towards the Six Nations.

"It’s going to be a challenging and busy couple of months, but it’s fantastic opportunity for us to create a special environment and help players achieve their dream of playing in green."

The 37-year-old most recently played a key role in Munster’s Vodafone Women’s Inter-Provincial success as assistant coach and has continued her coaching development as head coach of UL Bohemians.

Briggs (2l) has working with RTÉ Sport for the URC

Ireland begin their 2022 TikTok Women's Six Nations campaign against Wales on 26 March in the RDS.

Building towards that, McWilliams will cast his eye over 41 Energia All-Ireland League-based players who assemble at the IRFU HPC in Dublin this weekend for a three-day screening camp.

England-based players will remain at their clubs to get more game time, while the Sevens contingent, who won silver in Seville at the weekend, "will be integrated in the coming weeks".

Briggs and McWilliams

McWilliams said: "This is an exciting time for domestic rugby and the Energia All-Ireland League, and we've selected a squad for this weekend's screening camp that is reflective of that.

"We've been very clear with the players as to the profile we're looking for and we're looking for players with a good skillset, who bring an energy and intent and are able to go for long distances with high-quality ball-in-play time.

"This weekend is all about testing the players in different situations. It's important we test their rugby playing ability, but also their mind and their intellect around the game.

"We've set up a weekend that is going to be challenging for the players but it is also going to give the staff good information as we build towards the Six Nations."

Meanwhile Ulster wing Craig Gilroy has been handed a four-week ban for a heavy tackle on Scarlets winger Thomas Rogers.

Gilroy received a yellow card during Ulster's United Rugby Championship win over the Welsh region, but was subsequently cited for a dangerous tackle, which the disciplinary committee deemed reckless and worthy of a red card.

The punishment for such an offence is six weeks and the former Ireland international received two weeks mitigation due to previous conduct, rather than the full three, as he failed to accept the tackle warranted a red card.

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Follow all of Ireland's Six Nations games via our live blogs on rte.ie/sport and on the RTÉ News App or listen to live radio coverage on RTÉ Radio 1. Watch live TV coverage of Ireland v Wales (5 February, 2.15pm) and England v Ireland (12 March, 4.45pm) on RTÉ2 and the RTÉ Player.