Jump to main content

Menu

Kenya Next Up For Ireland Men Following Heavy Loss To Blitzboks

Kenya Next Up For Ireland Men Following Heavy Loss To Blitzboks

The gap between the 16th and number one seeds at the Rugby World Cup Sevens was reflected by Ireland’s 45-7 defeat overnight to a super-charged South Africa side, who had a four-try contribution from livewire winger Siviwe Soyizwapi.

MEN’S RUGBY WORLD CUP SEVENS – ROUND OF 16: Friday, July 20

SOUTH AFRICA 45 IRELAND 7, AT&T Park, San Francisco
Scorers: Ireland: Try: Terry Kennedy; Con: Hugo Keenan

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Having qualified for the round of 16 thanks to Jimmy O’Brien’s dramatic try after the final hooter against Chile, the Ireland men were hoping to upset one of the tournament favourites, yet the Blitzboks, in this first outing in San Francisco, showed their undoubted class to reel off seven tries – three in the lead up to half-time.

Played under the AT&T Park floodlights and watched by a vocal crowd, the game started on a good footing for Ireland with Harry McNulty winning the kick-off from South Africa and Jordan Conroy getting an early opportunity to take on Soyizwapi who forced a knock-on. However, the white-shirted Irish soon had to defend two kicks over the top as the Blitzboks pinned them back in their own 22.

John O’Donnell was isolated in his attempts to claw back metres, with Dylan Sage locking in at the breakdown to win a penalty, and Selvyn Davids’ quick tap and pass sent Justin Geduld scrambling in under the posts for a fourth-minute opener. Sage increased his influence by drawing a knock-on from McNulty at the restart, keeping South Africa on the front foot.

They added two late tries to open up a 19-0 lead at the break, Soyizwapi cutting inside Conroy and handing off O’Brien for his first of the night, and then O’Brien’s attempted pass was well read and intercepted by Geduld, the suffocating defence quickly using the turnover to send Soyizwapi over to the left of the posts for a first half brace.

It was soft score for Ireland to concede and the half-time statistics showed four errors made, three penalties conceded and four missed tackles – numbers that a top-tier side like South Africa will make you pay for. Captain Billy Dardis got the game back underway but it took the Blitzboks just a few seconds to add to their tally as Conroy went too high on Werner Kok who palmed him off and charged away to score in the left corner.

Selvyn Davids knocked over a terrific conversion from out wide and swiftly added the extras to Geduld’s ninth-minute score, the play-maker profiting from Sage’s tap-back of the restart and Davids’ neatly-timed short pass to send him gliding over. Sage’s swinging arm again batted the ball away from McNulty’s grasp when play resumed as Ireland continued to be starved of possession.

South Africa’s bench kept them moving forward, their opponents down a squad player due to Bryan Mollen hobbling off against Chile, and Soyizwapi tagged on two more tries. He struck from close range via good approach work from replacements Rosko Specman and Zain Davids. Little was going right for Ireland with Hugo Keenan unrewarded for a turnover at the breakdown and Shane Daly knocking on a pass from fellow replacement Terry Kennedy.

Kennedy did at least ensure that Ireland got on the scoreboard in the dying seconds, combining with Keenan to release O’Brien up the right wing and the St. Mary’s College speedster collected a return offload to dash in behind the posts and register his first World Cup try, converted by Keenan who set the bar in terms of work-rate around the pitch.

Next up for Stan McDowell’s charges is a quarter-final against Kenya in the Challenge section of the tournament. That game will kick off at 2.04pm local time/10.04pm Irish time – live on eir Sport 1/live streaming via www.rwcsevens.com (in certain countries)/highlights on ITV 4. The Kenyans, who finished eighth in the recent World Series, were stung by a stirring late Scottish comeback and eventually lost their round-of-16 clash, 31-26.

TIME LINE: 4 minutes – South Africa try: Justin Geduld – 5-0; conversion: Selvyn Davids – 7-0; 7 mins – South Africa try: Siviwe Soyizwapi – 12-0; conversion: missed by Selvyn Davids – 12-0; 7+1 mins – South Africa try: Siviwe Soyizwapi – 17-0; conversion: Selvyn Davids – 19-0; Half-time – South Africa 19 Ireland 0; 8 mins – South Africa try: Werner Kok – 24-0; conversion: Selvyn Davids – 26-0; 9 mins – South Africa try: Justin Geduld – 31-0; conversion: Selvyn Davids – 33-0; 11 mins – South Africa try: Siviwe Soyizwapi – 38-0; conversion: missed by Justin Geduld – 38-0; 13 mins – South Africa try: Siviwe Soyizwapi – 43-0; conversion: Dewald Human – 45-0; 14+2 mins – Ireland try: Terry Kennedy – 45-5; conversion: Hugo Keenan – 45-7; Full-time – South Africa 45 Ireland 7

Team: Foster Horan, Harry McNulty, John O’Donnell, Billy Dardis (capt), Hugo Keenan, Jimmy O’Brien, Jordan Conroy.

Subs used: Terry Kennedy, Ian Fitzpatrick, Shane Daly, Greg O’Shea.

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.

IRELAND MEN’S SEVENS Squad (2018 Rugby World Cup Sevens, AT&T Park, San Francisco, USA, Friday, July 20-Sunday, July 22):

Robert Baloucoune (Enniskillen/Ballymena/Ulster)
Jordan Conroy (Buccaneers)
Shane Daly (Cork Constitution/Munster)
Billy Dardis (UCD) (capt)
Ian Fitzpatrick (Lansdowne)
Foster Horan (Lansdowne)
Hugo Keenan (UCD/Leinster)
Terry Kennedy (St. Mary’s College)
Harry McNulty (UCD)
Bryan Mollen (Dublin University)
Jimmy O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
John O’Donnell (Lansdowne)
Greg O’Shea (Shannon)

IRELAND MEN’S RWC SEVENS Results/Fixtures –

Friday, July 20:

Pre-Round of 16: Ireland 17 Chile 12, AT&T Park, San Francisco
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Hugo Keenan, Billy Dardis, Jimmy O’Brien; Con: Billy Dardis

Match Report: Ireland Men Leave It Late As O’Brien Try Knocks Out Chile

Team: Shane Daly, John O’Donnell, Harry McNulty, Billy Dardis (capt), Hugo Keenan, Bryan Mollen, Jordan Conroy.

Subs used: Jimmy O’Brien, Terry Kennedy, Ian Fitzpatrick. Not used: Foster Horan, Greg O’Shea.

Round of 16: South Africa 45 Ireland 7, AT&T Park, San Francisco
Scorers: Ireland: Try: Terry Kennedy; Con: Hugo Keenan

Team: Foster Horan, Harry McNulty, John O’Donnell, Billy Dardis (capt), Hugo Keenan, Jimmy O’Brien, Jordan Conroy.

Subs used: Terry Kennedy, Ian Fitzpatrick, Shane Daly, Greg O’Shea.

Saturday, July 21:

Challenge Quarter-Final: Kenya v Ireland, AT&T Park, San Francisco, 2.04pm local time/10.04pm Irish time

Sunday, July 22:

Finals

More details on the Rugby World Cup Sevens are available here. Tickets are available to purchase here via the tournament website. There are single-day tickets in all seating categories and three-day tickets.