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Ulster star Aaron Sexton misses out on Ireland squad for World Sevens Series

Speed machine: Aaron Sexton
Speed machine: Aaron Sexton

Ulster speedster Aaron Sexton has missed out on a place in the Ireland squad for next week's HSBC World Rugby Men’s Sevens Series.

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The former Bangor Grammar star and Ballynahinch's Iwan Hughes had been in Anthony Eddy's warm-up panel but both of the Ulster players have been left out of the final 13-man squad for Ireland's debut as a core team on the world stage.

They are two of four players that had been included in the squad for the warm-up Elche 7s tournament to miss out on the final panel. Peter Maher and Cormac Izuchukwu were also left out with Blackrock's Bryan Mollen and former Ireland Under-20 captain Jack Kelly brought in. 

Sexton, of course, hit the headlines last season when he broke the record for the fasted speed record by an Ulster player, clocking 10.5m/s (37.8km/h) in the Celtic Cup game versus Cardiff. He would go on to become the fastest teenager in Europe before giving up his track career to devote his time to rugby, joining the Ulster Academy.

There is still hope that Ulster could have representation at the tournament, with the women's team due to be announced. Lucinda Kinghan, Claire Boles and Maeve Liston are all in contention, having been named in the warm-up squad last month.

Billy Dardis will captain the Ireland men's squad, who will open their tournament against USA next Thursday (December 5) at 6.12pm local time/2.12pm Irish time, before facing Australia (11.58am local time/7.58am Irish time) and Scotland (5.50pm local time/1.50pm Irish time) in further pool outings on Friday.

"The players have been looking forward to this for a long time and are delighted to be recognised as a core team on the World Series," said coach Eddy. "They will be very keen to put in a performance that justifies all the hard work they have done to reach this point."

Ireland Men's squad for Dubai Sevens

Aaron O’Sullivan (Blackrock/Leinster)

Adam Leavy (Lansdowne)

Billy Dardis (Terenure College)(captain)

Bryan Mollen (Blackrock College)

Foster Horan (Lansdowne)

Greg O’Shea (Shannon)

Harry McNulty (UCD)

Hugo Lennox (Skerries)

Jack Kelly (Dublin University)

John O’Donnell (Lansdowne)

Jordan Conroy (Buccaneers)

Mark Roche (Lansdowne)

Terry Kennedy (St. Mary’s College)

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