Jump to main content

Menu

Conroy And Roche Join World Sevens Elite In London Dream Team

Conroy And Roche Join World Sevens Elite In London Dream Team

On top of their historic breakthrough to finish as bronze medal winners at the London Sevens over the weekend, there was individual success for the Ireland Men’s Sevens squad as Jordan Conroy, the tournament’s joint-top try scorer, and Mark Roche both made the HSBC Dream Team.

HSBC DREAM TEAM – 2018 LONDON SEVENS (HSBC WORLD RUGBY SEVENS SERIES):

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Mike Ellery (England)
Paula Dranisinukula (Fiji)
Dylan Sage (South Africa)
Jordan Conroy (Ireland)
Josua Tuisova (Fiji)
Mark Roche (Ireland)
Semi Radradra (Fiji)

Jordan Conroy and Mark Roche’s excellent form throughout the two days at Twickenham Stadium was rewarded with selection on the HSBC Dream Team, which acknowledges the seven most impressive players over the course of a World Sevens Series event. Three members of Fiji’s Cup-winning side were included.

Despite being the lone invitational team of the 16-team field and coming in with a ranking of 21st, Ireland stunned some of the world’s leading Sevens sides to finish third overall behind runners-up South Africa and series leaders and Olympic champions Fiji, who looked a class apart at times.

Conroy’s name was on the lips of many people in the stadium and watching at home after he ran in eight tries during Ireland’s unforgettable London run, including a stunning hat-trick in the 21-19 bronze final victory over England, last year’s series silver medallists.

The Buccaneers clubman, who hails from Tullamore, Co. Offaly, has had an injury-disrupted season but he has quickly got back to his best in recent weeks, scoring eight tries to help Ireland retain their Moscow 7s title and following up with the same number against top tier opposition in London.

The 24-year-old winger’s electric acceleration left a number of highly-regarded Sevens operators trailing in his wake, including two of the series’ long-established speed merchants – the USA’s Carlin Isles and England record-breaker Dan Norton. Indeed, Conroy finished top of the try-scoring charts in world-class company alongside Isles, Norton and Kenyan star Collins Injera (eight each).

Conroy said it was ‘an unbelievable few days’, ‘an amazing experience’ and ‘a moment we’ll never forget’ as the men in green upset the odds in exhilarating fashion, something which they hope to do on a regular basis if they can make it through to next year’s World Series qualifier in Hong Kong and go on to secure core team status.

Roche left Twickenham with the indelible memory of his superb match-winning conversion against England – just one of the highlights of his consistently excellent play as a scrum half, play-maker and goal-kicker for Anthony Eddy’s charges. It has been a stellar couple of weeks for the Roche family, with Mark’s younger brother Tom making his Ireland Under-20 debut at the World Rugby U-20 Championship in France.

The IRFU Men’s Sevens Programme’s busy summer schedule continues next week as an invitational team at the final World Series leg of the season at Paris’ Stade Jean Bouin. Captain Billy Dardis wants his side to keep up the momentum as the countdown continues to next month’s Rugby World Cup Sevens in San Francisco and the three remaining Rugby Europe Grand Prix Sevens Series tournament.

Reflecting on the squad’s achievements on day two at Twickenham, Dardis said: “Coming up against a team like the USA, who won a series event earlier in the year, and Fiji who have been not dominant but one of the top teams in the competition, and England were runners-up in the series last year…to come up against those three was a big challenge but I thought we met it head-on and did ourselves proud.

“I think we’ve got to take this momentum into next week (in Paris) and build on it. We’ve got a great squad, a good bunch of lads, and I think we can only get better and better. It’s really exciting, it’s great to play at a World Series tournament and it gives us confidence to show that we can compete at the top level.

“With the World Cup being a knockout tournament, you have to be perfect. You have to be close to perfect in every game. We’re not going (to San Francisco) just to complete, we’re going to win – that’s our ultimate aim like every other team. We want to challenge the best in the world.”

Click here to buy Paris Sevens tickets.

RWC Sevens tickets are available here.

Follow the Ireland Women’s and Men’s Sevens teams this season in our exclusive behind-the-scenes series – On The Road with the Ireland 7s.

The Ireland Sevens jerseys are available to buy online here from Elverys Intersport, official sports retailer of the IRFU.