Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022 results: Ireland stun South Africa to reach semi-finals; New Zealand, Australia and Fiji all through
- Hosts suffer shock 24-14 loss in a dramatic finale to Saturday’s action at Cape Town Stadium
- Irish will face defending champions New Zealand, with Australia to battle Fiji after both come from behind to win
Ireland stunned hosts South Africa 24-14 to reach the semi-finals of the 2022 Rugby World Cup Sevens in a dramatic finale to Saturday’ action at Cape Town Stadium.
Mark Roche’s try and conversion gave the Irish an early 7-0 lead, but the Blitzboks levelled it up just before the break when Muller du Plessis went over, and Ronald Brown added the extras.
But South Africa were stunned as Ireland scored three quick fire tries through Harry McNulty’s effort and two from Jordan Conroy to race into an unassailable 24-7 lead.
Mfundo Ndhlovu grabbed a consolation, with Selvyn Davids’ conversion cutting the deficit, but it was still a bitter loss for the hosts.
South Africa will now face Argentina on Sunday in a fifth-place semi-final. The other semi will be contested by France and Samoa.
Ireland’s prize is a Championship semi-final against defending champions New Zealand, who came from behind to beat Argentina 12-5.
The South Americans led through German Schulz’ early score. But tries from Scott Curry and Moses Leo turned the match around.
The other Championship semi-final will see Fiji take on Australia, who were made to work for a gritty 14-5 victory against France.
Dietrich Roache converted Henry Paterson’s opening try for the Aussies, two minutes into first-half added time.
France hit back immediately when Paulin Riva went over in the first minute of the second half, but the conversion was missed by Jean Pascal Barraque.
Australia then secured the win in the 10th minute, Maurice Longbottom scoring and converting his own try.
Fiji were comfortable 21-10 winners over Samoa, but also had to recover from going behind early on when Steve Onosai crossed after three minutes.
Jerry Tuwai soon went over, with Waisea Nacuqu’s conversion putting the Fijians in front before the break.
Tries from Kaminieli Rasaku and Sevuloni Mocenacagi – both converted by Nacuqu – saw Fiji race away, with Onosai’s late second core merely a consolation for Samoa.
Sunday’s men’s challenge final will see England take on Uruguay. England thrashed Kenya 36-0 in their semi-final, while Uruguay edged the USA 21-19 in a thriller.