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Winning Start For Ireland Men At Seville Sevens

Winning Start For Ireland Men At Seville Sevens

Ireland captain Bryan Mollen, with Andrew Smith in support, comes up against Tim Litchtenberg of Germany ©INPHO/Martin Seras Lima

Giant winger Tamilore Awonusi scored his first HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series try as the Ireland Men got off to a winning start in Seville.

Anthony Eddy’s side began the second of the back-to-back HSBC Spain Sevens tournaments with a runaway 33-5 victory over Germany.

It was tight first half, a couple of Irish handling errors preceding John Dawe’s third-minute opener as he came around the corner and powered over past two defenders.

A wicked bounce from the restart favoured Ireland as Jack Kelly collected the ball for an immediate seven points in response, striding clear from his own 10-metre line.

Mark Roche converted and also added the extras to Kelly’s second try, the Dublin University clubman doing really well to hold onto a pass at the second attempt and then use his strength to score under the posts.

Niall Comerford was held up just before half-time, leaving it 14-5. It took three breathless minutes of the second half before Andrew Smith scored try number three, following up on captain Bryan Mollen’s break and pass.

A Zac Ward turnover penalty launched Ireland forward again, and he was involved in some neat interplay as he combined with Kelly and Aaron O’Sullivan to send Comerford over, wide on the right.

Roche nailed his third conversion and just past the full-time hooter, Conor Phillips won the restart and popped up again soon after, offloading out of a double tackle for fellow 22-year-old Awonusi to touch down.

The extras were swept over by Roche for a 28-point winning margin, leaving Ireland to regroup for their day two duels with Jamaica and Argentina and an exciting conclusion to Pool B.

IRELAND MEN’S SEVENS Squad (HSBC Spain Sevens, Estadio La Cartuja de Sevilla, Seville, January 2022):

Tamilore Awonusi (IQ Rugby)
Niall Comerford (UCD RFC/Leinster)
Sean Cribbin (Suttonians RFC)
Sean Kearns (Ireland Sevens)
Jack Kelly (Dublin University FC)
Terry Kennedy (St. Mary’s College RFC)
Bryan Mollen (Blackrock College RFC) (capt)
Aaron O’Sullivan (Blackrock College RFC)
Conor Phillips (Young Munster RFC/Munster)
Mark Roche (Lansdowne FC)
Tom Roche (Lansdowne FC)
Andrew Smith (Clontarf FC/Leinster)
Zac Ward (Ballynahinch RFC)

HSBC WORLD RUGBY SEVENS SERIES – SPAIN SEVENS FIXTURES/RESULTS:

Friday, January 28 –

POOL B:

IRELAND 33 GERMANY 5, Estadio La Cartuja de Sevilla
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Jack Kelly 2, Andrew Smith, Niall Comerford, Tamilore Awonusi; Cons: Mark Roche 4
Germany: Try: John Dawe
HT: Ireland 14 Germany 5

Team: Bryan Mollen (capt), Jack Kelly, Andrew Smith, Sean Cribbin, Terry Kennedy, Mark Roche, Niall Comerford.

Subs used: Aaron O’Sullivan, Zac Ward, Conor Phillips, Tom Roche, Tamilore Awonusi.

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series – Spain Sevens Fixtures/Results

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series – Spain Sevens Pool Tables

Saturday, January 29 –

POOL B:

IRELAND v JAMAICA, Estadio La Cartuja de Sevilla, 10.13am local time/9.13am Irish time

ARGENTINA v IRELAND, Estadio La Cartuja de Sevilla, 4.03pm local time/3.03pm Irish time