Sport

Eight-try Ireland power past Tonga for convincing victory

Sep 16, 2023 22:44 By Michael Cooke
Eight-try Ireland power past Tonga for convincing victory
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Johnny Sexton also became Ireland's all-time leading points scorer.

Ireland claimed their second win from as many Rugby World Cup games following a 59-16 victory over Tonga at Nantes.

An utterly dominant display saw Andy Farrell’s men register eight tries on a night where captain Johnny Sexton became Ireland’s all-time leading points scorer.

Ireland led 10-6 on 24 minutes. Tadhg Beirne’s try supplemented a converted Sexton penalty while Willie Havili accounted for all of Tonga’s points.

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Further tries from Caelan Doris, Mack Hansen and Sexton gave Ireland a 25-point cushion two minutes before the break.

Sexton’s try saw him overtake Ronan O’Gara’s long-standing record of 1,083 points. The out-half added the conversion bringing his own tally to 1,090.

Peter O’Mahony was sin binned just break. Tonga’s Vaea Fifita touched down on the stroke of half-time, but Ireland still led 31-13.

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Havili reduced the margin to 15 points three minutes into the second half. 16 minutes later, James Lowe crossed the line for Ireland’s fifth try.

Ross Byrne was now operating at out-half in Sexton’s place and the Leinster man slotted over the conversion.

Man-of-the-match Bundee Aki followed up with two tries in six minutes before Rob Herring added another right at the death.

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Byrne landed the conversion on each occasion as Ireland ran out comfortable winners in the end.

 

 

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