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Ireland suffer heavy defeat

The highlight of the 1996 season was the arrival of the New Zealand Team, ranked second in the world, on their first visit to Ireland, to take part in a three game series. Ireland were well aware that they were up against the best but looked forward to the challenge. Two new caps, Claire O'Leary (Railway Union) and Adele Spence (Malahide) were introduced to the Irish team but sadly we had to say goodbye to two of our outstanding players, Mary Pat Moore and Susan Bray. During her career, Mary Pat Moore attained 48 caps as well as captaining the side on a number of occasions. Susan Bray was capped 40 times.

The first match took place at Clontarf on July 18th. On winning the toss, New Zealand elected to bat and made 208 for seven in 50 overs. Ireland replied with 111 after 45.4 overs, the visitors winning by 97 runs. For the second match at Pembroke , Nikki Squire came in for Susan Bray, and again New Zealand batted first scoring 270 for two with Karen Le Comber unbeaten on 135. The home side replied with 127 for six. Emily Drumm was awarded Woman of the Match having scored 79 runs and taking two wickets for 12 runs. The final match, in which Spence replaced Mary Pat Moore, was held at Carlisle on an appalling day. New Zealand again batted first making 138 for two in 31 overs. Unfortunately the weather finally closed in before Ireland got a chance to reply.