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Jones And Parsons Bag Braces As Ireland Set Up Showdown With Spain
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Jones And Parsons Bag Braces As Ireland Set Up Showdown With Spain

Jones And Parsons Bag Braces As Ireland Set Up Showdown With Spain

The Ireland maul makes ground during their second round match against Colombia at the WXV3 tournament in Dubai ©Christopher Pike/World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty Images

Mastercard player-of-the-match Neve Jones and Béibhinn Parsons scored two tries each as the Ireland Women swept Colombia aside in Dubai, winning their second WXV3 game 64-3 to set up a title decider with Spain next Saturday.


IRELAND 64 COLOMBIA 3, The Sevens Stadium 2, Dubai
Scorers: Ireland: Tries: Neve Jones 2, Natasja Behan, Grace Moore, Méabh Deely, Brittany Hogan, Edel McMahon, Béibhinn Parsons 2, Leahy Tarpey; Cons: Dannah O’Brien 5, Méabh Deely 2
Colombia: Pen: Maria I. Arzuaga
HT: Ireland 38 Colombia 0

With Nicole Fowley withdrawn due to a late niggle, Dannah O’Brien started again at out-half and added four conversions to Ireland’s six first half tries from Jones, Natasja Behan, Grace Moore, Méabh Deely, Brittany Hogan and co-captain Edel McMahon.

There were debuts for replacements Fiona Tuite, who has a series of solid carries, and Clara Barrett. Parsons and Jones took Scott Bemand’s side from 38-0 to a half-century of points before Colombia’s Maria I. Arzuaga responded with a 62nd-minute penalty.

Parsons’ sixth try of the tournament, coupled with Leah Tarpey’s first international score, completed the scoring, but Ireland did leave further tries behind them with Sadhbh McGrath held up and fellow replacement Sarah Delaney denied from a last-minute maul.

The girls in green quickly got down to work, a breakdown penalty won by Moore putting them on the front foot and an early attacking flurry finished with Aoife Dalton putting hooker Jones over near the left corner.

O’Brien lofted over a fine conversion and it was her neat interplay with Eve Higgins that set up winger Behan to go over in the 11th minute. Maribel Mestra came up with a crucial steal as Ireland flooded forward again, with their maul causing plenty of problems for las Tucanes.

A purposeful 16th-minute drive was brought down short before flanker Moore plunged over from a ruck just two phases later. Armed with a scrum penalty, a classy cross-field kick from O’Brien picked out Parsons whose inside pass sent Deely over for a converted bonus-point score in the 21st minute.

Parsons had a strong cross-pitch run before O’Brien released Hogan through a gap to touch down from close range. The Tullow youngster tagged on the conversion for a 31-0 lead, and Jones’ big tackle on her opposite number Silvia Olave kept Colombia pinned back in their own half.

Ireland were able to exert a lot of defensive pressure, as their first-up tackling and counter-rucking consistently forced Colombia to lose ground. A couple of penalties, including another at scrum time, set them up for a sixth try just before the break.

After Hogan had carried hard off a penalty-winning scrum, Aoibheann Reilly’s quick pass put McMahon in under the posts for O’Brien to convert. Little over a minute into the second half, Parsons had a simple run-in following a typically powerful charge from Linda Djougang and a final pass from co-captain Sam Monaghan out wide.

A turnover penalty won by Parsons got Ireland back on track after a few untidy phases, and the livewire Jones was duly driven over from a 10-metre maul. O’Brien split the posts with the conversion, putting 50 points between the teams.

Tuite and Barrett both came on to win their first caps before Arzuaga’s three-pointer rewarded a purple patch from the Colombian pack. The South Americans, who have only been playing Test rugby since 2019, took the points on offer after O’Brien had done really well to hold up Natalia Barajas off a maul.

A Barrett pass just had too much on it as Parsons lurked on the right wing, but the Ballinasloe flyer did double her tally in the 69th minute when she stepped inside and took Melisa Rois Mena with her over the try-line. Credit to the newly-introduced Molly Scuffil-McCabe for an initial turnover and the try assist.

Deely, who stepped in at out-half following O’Brien’s departure, swung over the conversion from the right. Although there was some loose handling at times, Ireland finished strongly with Deely using Higgins’ decoy run to put Tarpey striding over with six minutes remaining.

Their second successive bonus point victory has Bemand’s charges sitting at the top of the table on 10 points, with Spain just one behind following their 26-19 defeat of Fiji. Next week’s final round clash is a repeat of the 2021 Rugby World Cup qualifier which Ireland lost by a single point (8-7).

TIME LINE: 3 minutes – Ireland try: Neve Jones – 5-0; conversion: Dannah O’Brien – 7-0; 11 mins – Ireland try: Natasja Behan – 12-0; conversion: missed by Dannah O’Brien – 12-0; 17 mins – Ireland try: Grace Moore – 17-0; conversion: missed by Dannah O’Brien – 17-0; 21 mins – Ireland try: Méabh Deely – 22-0; conversion: Dannah O’Brien – 24-0; 25 mins – Ireland try: Brittany Hogan – 29-0; conversion: Dannah O’Brien – 31-0; 38 mins – Ireland try: Edel McMahon – 36-0; conversion: Dannah O’Brien – 38-0; Half-time – Ireland 38 Colombia 0; 42 mins – Ireland try: Béibhinn Parsons – 43-0; conversion: missed by Dannah O’Brien – 43-0; 51 mins – Ireland try: Neve Jones – 48-0; conversion: Dannah O’Brien – 50-0; 62 mins – Colombia penalty: Maria I. Arzuaga – 50-3; 69 mins – Ireland try: Béibhinn Parsons – 55-3; conversion: Méabh Deely – 57-3; 74 mins – Ireland try: Leah Tarpey – 62-3; conversion: Méabh Deely – 64-3; Full-time – Ireland 64 Colombia 3

Referee: Ano Kuwai (Japan)

Lineups Scorers

Match Lineups

Home Team

Méabh Deely (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht); Béibhinn Parsons (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht), Eve Higgins (Railway Union RFC/Leinster), Aoife Dalton (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster), Natasja Behan (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster); Dannah O'Brien (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster), Aoibheann Reilly (Blackrock College RFC/Connacht); Linda Djougang (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster), Neve Jones (Gloucester-Hartpury), Christy Haney (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster), Eimear Corri (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster), Sam Monaghan (Gloucester-Hartpury/IQ Rugby) (co-capt), Grace Moore (Saracens/IQ Rugby), Edel McMahon (Exeter Chiefs) (co-capt), Brittany Hogan (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster). Replacements used: Sadhbh McGrath (City of Derry RFC/Cooke RFC/Ulster) for Haney, Fiona Tuite (Old Belvedere RFC/Ulster) for Corri, Leah Tarpey (Railway Union RFC/Leinster) for Dalton (all 53 mins), Molly Scuffil-McCabe (Railway Union RFC/Leinster) for Reilly, Clara Barrett (UL Bohemian RFC/Connacht) for O'Brien (both 61), Dorothy Wall (Blackrock College RFC/Munster) for Hogan (62), Sarah Delaney (Cill Dara RFC/Leinster) for Jones, Niamh O'Dowd (Old Belvedere RFC/Leinster) for Djougang (both 70).

Away Team

Leidy García; Melisa Rois Mena, Maribel Mestra, Luisa Fernanda Zurique, Angie Manyoma; Camila Lopera (capt), Stefania Sarmiento; Maria Antonia Cortes, Silvia Olave, Gisel Gomez, Sara Velez, Valentina Álvarez, Valentina Yepes Pena, Angela Alzate, Laura Gutierrez. Replacements used: Natalia Barajas for Cortes, Carolina Naranjo for Gomez, Laura Villota Noguera for Sarmiento (all half-time), Maria I. Arzuaga for Mestra (56 mins), Natalia Caisedo for Olave, Daniela Roman Quintero for Alvarez, Valeria Muñoz for Alzate, Sofia Granados Cardenas for Lopera (all 65).

Match Scorers

Home Team

Tries: Neve Jones 2, Natasja Behan, Grace Moore, Méabh Deely, Brittany Hogan, Edel McMahon, Béibhinn Parsons 2, Leahy Tarpey; Cons: Dannah O'Brien 5, Méabh Deely 2

Away Team

Pen: Maria I. Arzuaga