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World Cup Dream Team Honours For McNulty And Kennedy

World Cup Dream Team Honours For McNulty And Kennedy

World Cup Dream Team Honours For McNulty And Kennedy

Harry McNulty was in try-scoring form during Ireland's round of 16 victory over England at Cape Town Stadium ©INPHO/Travis Prior

On the back of the Ireland Men’s superb bronze medal success, Harry McNulty and Terry Kennedy have been included in the IC Markets Rugby World Cup Sevens Dream Team.

Joining the Irish pair in the prestigious line-up are Joseva Talacolo, Jerry Tuwai and Kaminieli Rasaku from newly-crowned champions Fiji, and New Zealand duo Scott Curry and Ngarohi McGarvey-Black.

Ireland’s lynchpin forward, McNulty was hugely influential for James Topping’s men at restarts, set-piece time and in defence, while he had a canny knack of popping up with important tries over the weekend.

The 29-year-old, who has been part of the IRFU Men’s Sevens set-up since 2015, finished as Ireland’s joint-top try scorer in Cape Town having touched down against England, hosts South Africa and Australia, in the Bronze final.

For Kennedy, who works with Ireland team sponsors TritonLake and is set to take a year out from the game, this was a near perfect conclusion to an already unforgettable season for him personally.

The St. Mary’s College clubman was the Gilbert Top Try Scorer award winner with 50 tries and also voted onto the HSBC Dream Team, following the Ireland Men’s best ever overall World Series finish of fifth and their maiden Cup final appearance.

Helping Ireland to now consistently challenge the world’s best sides and compete for tournament honours, Kennedy really came to the fore during the Bronze decider at Cape Town Stadium.

The 26-year-old displayed his searing pace and footballing skills, scoring from his own kick through to draw level with Australia, before his much-replayed kick pass opened the way for McNulty’s match winner.

Reflecting on the World Cup as a whole and Ireland’s route to the bronze medal, Kennedy said: “We spoke about building as the tournament went on, and unfortunately we just lost out to New Zealand (in the semi-final).

“But to come back together and regroup and go out there and get that bronze medal just shows what a special group this is.

“To get a medal in the World Cup is unbelievable. It’s something we did speak about, but to go out there and actually do it is incredibly special.”

The current Rugby Players Ireland and Rugby Writers of Ireland Men’s Sevens Player of the Year added: “To consistently perform at the top level you do have to start beating the big teams. You can’t just be happy to stay in the game with them.

“I think that is something the group has pushed on and really emphasised that we know we’re capable of beating them. And this year to actually really go on and do it is so good and something we’re very proud of.”