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Ireland 7s book 9th/10th place play-off spot after 31-point win over South Korea

Ireland will now face either Kenya or Japan in the play-off.

Harry McNulty giving his post-match interview to RTÉ.
Harry McNulty giving his post-match interview to RTÉ.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

THE IRELAND RUGBY Sevens team have booked their spot in a play-off for 9th/10th place at the Olympics after a 31-0 victory over South Korea.

Gavin Mullin and Jordon Conroy both grabbed a brace of tries while Mark Roche also crossed over to help Ireland to a comfortable win. They will now face the winners of Kenya and Japan in the play-off.

Earlier this morning in Tokyo, Anthony Eddy’s side suffered last-minute agony as a late Kenya try ended their medal hopes and they missed out on a quarter-final spot.

They needed to win by at least eight points to advance, and they were in a position to do as they led 12-0, but heartbreak ensued.

Ireland were beaten 33-14 by South Africa in their Olympics debut yesterday, and then 19-17 by the USA in their second outing, but a big victory today would have seen them advance from Group C.

“Nobody won in that scenario,” McNulty said after this morning’s 12-7 win, which ultimately felt like a defeat in the grand scheme of things.

“It’s disappointing. I think we really should have won that game by a whole lot more. If we had one more score on the board, or if we didn’t let them in, we would have gone through to the quarters.

“Realistically, if we had played at our best the last two days I think we would have been well and truly in there and have a really good shot at putting ourselves up for some sort of medal. It’s just disappointing because we know we’re so much better.

“It’s probably one of the lesser performances of our careers. I don’t know what’s really going wrong, but we’re not firing on all cylinders. It’s just simple errors. It’s really small errors, but at this level, particularly at the Olympics, those errors will cost you.”

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2016 champions Fiji face Australia in their quarter-final, while it’s New Zealand v Canada, South Africa v Argentina,and Great Britain v USA elsewhere in the last eight.

Ireland squad: Jordan Conroy, Billy Dardis (captain), Ian Fitzpatrick, Foster Horan, Jack Kelly, Terry Kennedy, Adam Leavy, Hugo Lennox, Harry McNulty, Greg O’Shea, Mark Roche, Bryan Mollen.

About the author:

Emma Duffy

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