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The Ireland Men’s Sevens team beat Kenya 12-7 on Tuesday morning but failed to progress to the quarter-finals after conceding a late try.
Ireland needed to win the match by at least a seven-point margin to leapfrog Canada as the second-best third-placed side.
Ireland flew out of the blocks from the start with their star player of the tournament, Terry Kennedy, setting the standard with an assist for Hugo Lennox in the first minute.
Billy Dardis missed the conversion but the side put pressure on Kenya further and Harry McNulty was able to capitalise on a mistake from the opposition, getting over the line for his second try of the Olympics.
Ireland continued to prey on the Kenyan nerves, turning the ball over and knocking it on throughout the half.
Jordan Conroy’s run of bad luck continued after finding it hard to make his presence known in the previous games.
His performance was not up to scratch in the final pool game with several knock-ons and a bizarre decision to pass when there was clear ahead of him.
However, there is more than one player involved in a team and the second-half was error-strewn for the Irish side as a whole.
Kenya did not look like troubling the Irish defensive line until late in the half when they started making large gains with every carry.
The Shujaa showed their courage in the final minute, finally getting the seven points their drive deserved but ending Ireland’s Olympic hopes in the process.
Ireland head coach Anthony Eddy and his squad can hold their heads high for representing Team Ireland and will only grow from participating in a tournament of this level.
The side will be in action at Tokyo Stadium at least once more before they leave Japan.
Ireland will play the Republic of Korea at 8:30 am for a place in the ninth-place final.