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Superb Ireland stun hosts South Africa to secure Sevens World Cup semi-final spot

Ireland’s men’s 7s team reached a famous semi-final but there was disappointment for the women’s team.

Image: Travis Prior/INPHO

Updated Sep 10th 2022, 9:53 PM

AN OUTSTANDING QUARTER-final performance saw Ireland defeat South Africa 24-14 in the Rugby World Cup Sevens quarter-final.

A first-half try from Mark Roche put Ireland on their way. Against the run of play, South Africa scored before the break to give the home crowd something to cheer.

However, Harry McNulty, who was a huge presence at the line-out, restored their lead with a pick and go. Jordan Conroy then capitalised on a handling error as he scooped the ball from the ground and raced away. He scored again in the final minute to stun the hosts. 

“It is pretty cool to you are in a World Cup semi-final now,” said Billy Dardis post-match. 

“We said we want to come out here and kill the party. It is some atmosphere. I think they would have lived on that if they got momentum in the first half but we did well to get that first try and keep the pressure on.

“New Zealand are the only team we haven’t beaten on the World Series. We have been pretty close the last year or two. This is massive. A World Cup semi-final against New Zealand. It is going to be class. We are going to be fired up.” 

Ireland’s semi-final against New Zealand kicks off at 11:35am on Sunday. 

players-shake-hands-after-the-game Source: Travis Prior/INPHO

Earlier today, Ireland’s women’s team fell to a 28-0 loss against New Zealand in their quarter-final. 

The defending champions were rarely troubled during the game and dictated the pace from the start. An opening-minute try helped the Black Ferns to a 7-0 lead at half-time.

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A field-length sprint from Portia Woodman doubled their advantage. Alena Saili and Shiray Kaka added some gloss to the scoreboard before the final whistle. 

 

Aiden McNulty’s side are now set for the 5/8 place play-offs where they will take on the Fiji at 9.40am on Sunday. 

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