South Africa loses to Ireland for first time in 7s series

May 20, 2022 GMT

TOULOUSE, France (AP) — World series leader South Africa lost to Ireland for the first time when they opened the France Sevens on Friday.

Ireland won 21-12, clinching it late when Terry Kennedy beat his marker on the outside for his second try of the match.

Ireland’s prospects of making the quarterfinals took a hit against Samoa, though, when it blew a 14-5 lead and lost 27-14.

South Africa rebounded to beat Spain and faces a crucial final pool match with Samoa on Saturday.

Argentina, winner of the last leg in Vancouver, also stumbled when it lost to Canada 19-12 in a tit-for-tat match.

Argentina, down at halftime, tied the match, only for Canada’s David Richard to spin out of a tackle, step another defender and slip a third to score the match-winning try in the last minute.

The United States beat Australia 24-19 in a match that wasn’t as close as it appears. Perry Baker scored a hat trick of tries against Australia, but couldn’t get on the board when the Americans lost to New Zealand 19-17.

New Zealand, Fiji, England, Samoa, and host France finished the first day unbeaten.

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