Ireland captain Nichola Fryday says she is “excited” by the prospect of travelling to Japan for a two-Test series in August.
The Tests have been announced by the IRFU following an invitation by Japan, who are keen for games in advance of this year’s World Cup.
The opener will take place in Fukuroi City on 20 August with the sides meeting again in Tokyo on 27 August.
“It will be hugely exciting to lead the group in Japan,” said Fryday.
After the huge disappointment of missing out on World Cup qualification last year, the Irish, under new coach Greg McWilliams, finished third in this season’s Six Nations and the skipper says the Japan series will be invaluable for the squad.
“We are in the process of building under Greg and the coaching team and it is important we continue to move forward with contact time together and exposure to Test match situations, which the invitational series will provide,” added the Ireland captain.
Japan, whose 12th place in the world rankings has them five spots below the Irish, are coming off the back of a historic Test win over Australia and will use the series as further preparation for the World Cup in New Zealand in October.
The countries most recently faced each other during the 2021 November Tests at the RDS in Dublin when Ireland earned a 15-12 win.
Coach McWilliams will link up again with the Ireland squad in July to begin preparations for the tour.
“The invitational series will then give us the opportunity to spend time together as a group, build cohesion, learn and grow and test ourselves against a very strong Japan team in their home conditions,” said the Ireland coach.