Ireland and Scotland’s last-gasp victories over Australia and England particularly caught the eye on an opening day of upsets at the most recent edition of the HSBC Cape Town Sevens.
And the good news is that both matches will be available to watch again in full, thanks to our live streaming service this Wednesday, at 19:00 BST, on the official World Rugby Sevens Facebook page and World Rugby’s YouTube channel.
#CapeTown7s— Irish Rugby (@IrishRugby) December 14, 2019
'It's a lot of fun getting to showcase ourselves on the World Series' #IreM7s have qualified for their first @WorldRugby7s quarter-final as a core team
They face 🇫🇯 in Sunday's Cape Town showdown
Read: https://t.co/3KKA2gqvh1#ShoulderToShoulder pic.twitter.com/XyLwlxl3ce
Australia 21-26 Ireland
Ireland ensured that the men's competition got off to a surprise start when Terry Kennedy (main picture) scored with the final play from a superbly-executed set-piece move to snatch a 26-21 victory over Australia, their biggest scalp as a core team on the series. It was a dramatic turnaround from their 45-21 loss to the same opponents eight days earlier in Dubai.
Australia had led 14-7 at half-time before Ireland, making their first appearance in Cape Town, charged back with two quick-fire tries, the latter by captain Billy Dardis.
Joe Pincus' second try tied the scores with only seconds to play, but Australia then lost Lachie Miller to the sin-bin. From a lineout on halfway, Ireland took advantage of the extra man as Kennedy received possession, sold the defence a dummy and burst through to run in the winner.
"We're thrilled but we can't get ahead of ourselves," said Dardis. "We had a good chat inside after that and the lads are well hyped up. We have to go at it again, repeat the performances, and go better. But a great start to the weekend.”
Ireland ended up making the Cup quarter-finals but lost out to Fiji, 31-12.
England 24-26 Scotland
England and Scotland encounters are always hard-fought battles, whatever the teams playing, and this was certainly no exception.
Captain Robbie Fergusson put the Scots ahead while Dan Norton was in the sin-bin, but the all-time series top try scorer atoned with his 344th try on the stroke of half-time.
The pulsating second half swung one way then the other, England scoring twice before Scotland hit the front with their own double.
Harry Glover thought he had scored the winning try for England, only for Femi Sofolarin to stretch out to score for Scotland with the final act, ironically against the side he played for last season.
Scotland reached the Cup quarter-finals, but they failed to progress any further following a 35-19 defeat to eventual winners New Zealand.
While particularly pleased with the England win, Scotland coach Ciaran Beattie felt his side could have gone further.
“It's good to reach the cup quarters but, off the back of it, there’s disappointment because there’s a real belief we’re able to compete at the top end. That’s where we want to be,” he said.