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Ireland Women Earn Day One Double In Vancouver

Ireland Women Earn Day One Double In Vancouver

Ireland Women Earn Day One Double In Vancouver

Béibhinn Parsons, one of Ireland's try scorers, takes on Canada's Chloe Daniels during their HSBC Canada Sevens pool clash at BC Place ©INPHO/Travis Prior

The Ireland Women’s Sevens team (sponsored by TritonLake) are safely through to the Cup quarter-finals at the HSBC Canada Sevens after two opening wins.

Captain Lucy Mulhall and her team-mates got the better of hosts Canada (28-7) and Brazil (31-7) to sit top of the Pool C, ahead of Saturday’s decider against the USA (kick-off 11.50am local time/7.50pm Irish time).

Béibhinn Parsons and Eve Higgins touched down in both games as Ireland, lying fifth overall in the World Series standings, began their campaign in a chilly Vancouver in business-like fashion.

Canada’s defence gained some early encouragement, with Krissy Scurfield forcing a relieving penalty, but from a subsequent scrum Ireland went wide and Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe broke a tackle from Piper Logan to opening the scoring.

A sixth-minute set piece saw Emily Lane, Mulhall and Megan Burns combine to good effect in a well-executed move in midfield. Bianca Farella brought Mulhall down just short, but quick ruck ball allowed Burns to jink her way over.

Mulhall clipped over both conversions for a 14-0 half-time lead, and good competing at the breakdown from Lane and the newly-introduced Stacey Flood won possession back early in the second half.

Just when a pass from Flood had been knocked on in a tackle, Mulhall reacted quickest to flick a pass to Parsons who sped in between two defenders to make it 21-0.

Mulhall was also central to her side’s fourth and final try, drawing in defenders off a scrum and releasing Higgins on a lovely short line to dart in behind the posts.

The only blot on Ireland’s copybook was a last-minute concession as Canadian replacement Keyara Wardley burst clear down the left wing to open the host nation’s try account.

Ireland hit the front inside 90 seconds against Brazil, Higgins leading the charge with a brilliant arcing run and then popping up a few phases later to drive over from close range. Mulhall converted from the left.

The Brazilians created a breakaway opportunity late in the first half, only for Higgins to haul down Mariana Nicolau with an excellent chase back and then win a turnover penalty.

A further penalty at the breakdown, also won by Higgins, allowed Ireland to build a 12-0 advantage by half-time. Parsons claimed their second try, outpacing the final defender after Mulhall had used Burns’ decoy run to release her into space.

Flood’s high-fielding skills saw her win the restart and some crisp handling and interplay in midfield, between Mulhall, Parsons and Lane, propelled the scrum half over the line after just 21 seconds.

A quickly-taken penalty allowed Thalia Costa to cut through the middle and close the gap to 19-7, only for Ireland to close out the match with two more tries.

Mulhall sniped over from close with just over two minutes remaining, following up on the metres made by strong-carrying replacements Vicky Elmes Kinlan and Erin King, along with Parsons.

Just past the final hooter, Higgins injected pace off a King-won penalty at the breakdown, stepping away from two defenders and passing inside for the Old Belvedere flanker to get on the scoresheet.

Aiden McNulty’s side have narrowly missed out on bronze medal finishes in the last three tournaments in Cape Town, Hamilton and Sydney, but another high-ranking finish in Vancouver would further strengthen their case for a first ever Olympic qualification.

You can watch all the action as the Ireland Women compete at BC Place, via the World Rugby Sevens Match Centre here. You will need to register for a free World Rugby account.

IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS Squad (HSBC Canada Sevens, BC Place, Vancouver, Canada, March 3-5, 2023):

Kathy Baker (Blackrock College RFC)
Claire Boles (Railway Union RFC)
Megan Burns (Blackrock College RFC)
Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe (Railway Union RFC)
Stacey Flood (Railway Union RFC)
Katie Heffernan (Railway Union RFC)
Eve Higgins (Railway Union RFC)
Erin King (Old Belvedere RFC)
Vicky Elmes Kinlan (Wicklow RFC)
Emily Lane (Blackrock College RFC)
Kate Farrell McCabe (Suttonians RFC)
Lucy Mulhall (Wicklow RFC) (capt)
Béibhinn Parsons (Blackrock College RFC)

IRELAND WOMEN’S SEVENS Schedule – HSBC Canada Sevens:

Friday, March 3 –


​​​​​IRELAND 28 CANADA 7, BC Place
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe, Megan Burns, Béibhinn Parsons, Eve Higgins; Cons: Lucy Mulhall 4
Canada: Try: Keyara Wardley; Con: Olivia Apps
HT: Ireland 14 Canada 0

Team: Eve Higgins, Kathy Baker, Béibhinn Parsons, Emily Lane, Lucy Mulhall (capt), Megan Burns, Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe.

Subs used: Stacey Flood, Katie Heffernan, Claire Boles, Erin King. Not used: Vicky Elmes Kinlan.

​​​​​IRELAND 31 BRAZIL 7, BC Place
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Eve Higgins, Béibhinn Parsons, Emily Lane, Lucy Mulhall, Erin King; Cons: Lucy Mulhall 3
Brazil: Try: Thalia Costa; Con: Luiza Campos
HT: Ireland 12 Brazil 0

Team: Eve Higgins, Kathy Baker, Stacey Flood, Emily Lane, Lucy Mulhall (capt), Megan Burns, Béibhinn Parsons.

Subs used: Erin King, Vicky Elmes Kinlan, Katie Heffernan. Not used: Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe, Claire Boles.

Saturday, March 4 –


USA v IRELAND, BC Place, 11.50am local time/7.50pm Irish time


Sunday, March 5 –