WATCH- Ireland 7’s secure Hong Kong World Series qualifier place.

The Ireland Men’s Sevens team were bronze medal winners at the Exeter leg of the Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series, sealing their place at next year’s Hong Kong World Series qualifier with one tournament still to go.

Ireland are now guaranteed to finish as one of the top three non-core teams at the end of Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series. They picked up 16 points for their third-place finish in Exeter, with their only defeat coming against eventual champions England (31-19) at the semi-final stage, sandwiched between wins over Georgia (22-12) and Portugal (29-7).

Anthony Eddy’s men (56 points) have opened up a 10-point lead at the top of the series standings, with England (46), Russia (44) and Germany (42) leading the chasing pack. They have the European title to aim for in the final leg in Lodz, Poland (September 8-9), but it is mission accomplished in terms of booking a return trip to Hong Kong.

Ireland’s first appearance at the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series qualifying tournament three months ago ended in a heartbreaking semi-final exit to Japan, who went on to earn core team status as Hong Kong champions.

Shannon’s Greg O’Shea played no part in the side for that tournament but has been a crucial figure in the squad throughout the European Grand Prix campaign so far this season.

The flying winger will now hope to see his name of Eddie’s squad list for the upcoming World Cup in San Fransico.

Watch Ireland’s win over Portugal  in Sunday’s Bronze Final.(45:31-1:07:16)

Video courtesy of Rugby Europe.

IRELAND MEN’S SEVENS Squad (2018 Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series – Round 3, Sandy Park, Exeter, Saturday, July 7-Sunday, July 8):

Robert Baloucoune (Enniskillen/Ulster)
Jordan Conroy (Buccaneers)
Shane Daly (Cork Constitution/Munster)
Billy Dardis (UCD) (capt)
Foster Horan (Lansdowne)
Hugo Keenan (UCD/Leinster)
Terry Kennedy (St. Mary’s College)
Alex McHenry (Cork Constitution/Munster)
Harry McNulty (UCD)
Jimmy O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
John O’Donnell (Lansdowne)
Greg O’Shea (Shannon)