Maeve Liston is the second of our profiles of Ulster Women players that we hope to continue throughout the upcoming Women’s Interprovincial Series which kicks off this Saturday with Ulster Women hosting Munster Women at Ravenhill. Kick off 3:00pm. 

The Ballyshannon player first came to our attention in last season’s Ulster Women’s training camps but at that time she was only one of a number of recruits that the new coaching ticket of Philip Doyle and Jarrett Truscott had introduced to the squad. 

It wasn’t really until this season’s trial game, against Connacht in August, that I sat up and took note of the hard running centre with the mad pony tail. Looking back through the pictures from that game it was impressive how many times that pony tail appeared in the background of most of the Ulster attacks 🙂 

Throughout this time Maeve, who studies in Cardiff, has been playing for her Cardiff University side, under the tutelage of the exceptional Claire Molloy, as well training with the English Women’s Premiership topping side Bristol Ladies, all while making the time consuming and expensive trips back to Ulster for the Ulster Women’s Camps. 

It’s a path trodden by fellow Donegall native Larissa Muldoon, who alongside Nora Stapleton, is one of the inspirations behind Maeve’s decision to switch from Gaelic and Basketball three years ago and try her hand at rugby. 

I expect we’ll soon see how far Maeve, who can play in the centre or at fullback, has progressed in those three short years,  and certainly, she is a player with ambitions as she told our reporter Neve Jones on Sunday:

“I’d love for Ulster to secure a couple of wins in the upcoming Interprovincial Series, but win or lose I hope the team performs to the best of their ability. 

“I would love to get a run out, particularly at the home of Ulster Rugby, and if I do I’m looking forward to pitching my skills against those of the players from the other Provinces. I can’t wait for it all to kick off against Munster this Saturday. 

“I’m comparatively new at this game but I’m looking forward to working hard to improve my personal game and hope that I can become a regular for Bristol and, of course, Ulster, in the years to come.”

We should know the Ulster team for Saturday later tonight and, if Maeve makes the cut, I for one look forward to seeing that mad ponytail in full flight on Saturday afternoon! 

#SUFTUM