Ireland suffer Rugby World Cup qualifying blow with defeat to Spain

Adam Griggs’ side lost 8-7 to Spain in Parma
Ireland suffer Rugby World Cup qualifying blow with defeat to Spain

Ireland Women suffered a blow in their bid to reach next year’s Rugby World Cup with defeat to Spain in the opening match of their qualifying group.

Adam Griggs’ side lost 8-7 to Spain in Parma and now face an uphill task, having to beat Italy and Scotland in the round-robin competition to earn a place in the New Zealand tournament next year.

Ireland led for most of an error-ridden game but lost their edge when Spain crossed for a try with nine minutes to play.

Earlier today, tournament hosts Italy ran in six tries as they beat Scotland 38-13.

Ireland face Italy on Sunday, then Scotland the following Saturday, with the winner of the four-team group qualifying automatically for the World Cup.

The runner-up gets a second opportunity to make it to New Zealand by moving into the Final Qualification Tournament.

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