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Ireland Men Overcome England To Reach Quarter-Final Stage

Ireland Men Overcome England To Reach Quarter-Final Stage

Ireland Men Overcome England To Reach Quarter-Final Stage

Talismanic forward Harry McNulty breaks away from two defenders to score Ireland's opening try against England in Cape Town ©INPHO/Travis Prior

The Ireland Men (sponsored by TritonLake) got the better of England, winning 17-5 in the round of 16 to complete an encouraging first day for the IRFU Sevens Programmes at the Rugby World Cup Sevens.

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Harry McNulty powered through two attempted tackles to give them a 7-0 half-time lead, and further scores from Mark Roche and Jordan Conroy sandwiched the sin-binning of England captain Alex Davis.

The silver medallists at the 2018 World Cup, England had a late consolation try from Charlton Kerr, but Ireland deservedly took the verdict to advance to tomorrow night’s Championship quarter-finals.

Hosts South Africa will be their opponents, with that crunch game kicking off at 10.33pm local time/9.33pm Irish time. McNulty will relish playing the Blitzboks in front of a partisan Cape Town crowd.

“To have South Africa at home would be such a special game and I’m just so excited to, hopefully, have the opportunity to run out against them,” he admitted, speaking after the victory over England.

“I’m really delighted for the boys and the performance they put in (against England) to be able to get us to the next stage. It is obviously do-or-die and we played really well.

“There are a few things to tighten up on but we are really happy to be moving on in the competition. England are such a brilliant side, we’ve been good companions on and off the field for many years of playing in Rugby Europe and playing in all of the tournaments together, and the World Series.

“Now getting to play them in such a massive tournament where they have done so well over the last couple of World Cups. So it feels amazing but, again, with the way Sevens goes and the way this competition is based, now it is on to the next one.”

James Topping’s charges had earlier beaten Portugal 24-0, and with the Ireland Women winning 24-12 against Brazil, both national sides are now through to the last-eight at the same Sevens World Cup for the first time ever.

Conroy was closed down by Tom Bowen early on, and eighth-seeded England coughed up possession from a penalty before Conroy took on Bowen again and Leinster’s Andrew Smith showed his sidestepping ability.

Terry Kennedy and Hugo Lennox wielded more influence as Ireland took the English to the edges and moved within sight of the try-line.

The chance went abegging when Kennedy took a quick tap and his pass failed to find Smith, but the St. Mary’s College speedster did foil a Will Homer-inspired attack in response.

The breakthrough finally came in the sixth minute, Ireland retaining possession and McNulty, advancing over halfway, took on the responsibility to charge in between two defenders and gallop in under the posts.

Roche’s straightforward conversion made it 7-0 at the interval, and it was the scrum half’s early second half try – he finished strongly past Homer and Bowen via a long skip pass from Lennox – that put a dozen points between the teams.

England suffered a double setback not long after the restart. Smith won a penalty at the breakdown, Davis was promptly binned, and a sweeping move out to the left saw captain Billy Dardis’ scooped pass release Conroy for the corner.

The numbers were evened up from the restart when the otherwise impressive Jack Kelly took Freddie Roddick out in the air. England had the final say, Kerr evading the clutches of McNulty to belatedly open his side’s account.

All of Ireland’s games are live on the RTÉ Player in the Republic of Ireland, while there will be coverage across Irish Rugby social media channels and on IrishRugby.ie. A full list of broadcasters is available here.

The Ireland Men’s and Women’s Sevens teams are wearing their brand new Canterbury kit for the World Cup in Cape Town. Click here to buy the new jerseys online from Intersport Elverys.

IRELAND MEN’S SEVENS Squad (Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022, Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town, September 9-11, 2022):

Jordan Conroy (Buccaneers RFC)
Sean Cribbin (Suttonians RFC)
Billy Dardis (Terenure College RFC) (capt)
Jack Kelly (Dublin University FC)
Terry Kennedy (St. Mary’s College RFC)
Hugo Lennox (Skerries RFC)
Matt McDonald (IQ Rugby)
Harry McNulty (UCD RFC)
Bryan Mollen (Blackrock College RFC)
Chay Mullins (IQ Rugby)
Mark Roche (Lansdowne FC)
Andrew Smith (Clontarf FC/Leinster)

IRELAND MEN’S RWC Sevens Schedule –

Friday, September 9:

Pre-Round Of 16 –

IRELAND 24 PORTUGAL 0, Cape Town Stadium
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Terry Kennedy, Hugo Lennox, Sean Cribbin, Bryan Mollen; Cons: Mark Roche, Billy Dardis
Portugal: –
HT: Ireland 12 Portugal 0

Match Report: Kennedy: Happy To Get Through Without Conceding

Team: Harry McNulty, Matt McDonald, Jack Kelly Mark Roche, Hugo Lennox, Terry Kennedy, Chay Mullins.

Subs used: Sean Cribbin, Andrew Smith, Bryan Mollen, Billy Dardis (capt), Jordan Conroy.

Rugby World Cup Sevens – Fixtures/Results

Round Of 16 –

ENGLAND 5 IRELAND 17, Cape Town Stadium
Scorers: England: Try: Charlton Kerr
Ireland; Tries: Harry McNulty, Mark Roche, Jordan Conroy; Con: Mark Roche
HT: England 0 Ireland 7

Team: Harry McNulty, Andrew Smith, Jack Kelly, Mark Roche, Hugo Lennox, Terry Kennedy, Jordan Conroy.

Subs used: Billy Dardis (capt), Sean Cribbin, Chay Mullins, Matt McDonald, Bryan Mollen.

Saturday, September 10:

Championship Quarter-Final –

IRELAND v SOUTH AFRICA, Cape Town Stadium, 10.33pm local time/9.33pm Irish time