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Result: Ireland thrash Argentina to secure top-eight place

Seven tries help Ireland secure a place in the world's top eight.

Ireland have secured their place in the world's top eight sides after thrashing Argentina this afternoon.

 Ireland's Jonathan Sexton skips past Argentina's Eusebio Guinazu and Martin Landajo to score a try on November 24, 2012© PA Photos

Debutant Craig Gilroy opened the scoring for the home side after 10 minutes. The Ulster wing set up Jonathan Sexton for Ireland's second five minutes later.

Richardt Strauss added to the score in the 21st minute, converting from a lineout.

Simon Zebo scored his first try for Ireland just after the half-hour mark with the last score of the first half.

Argentina had few try-scoring opportunities in the opening period, but were able to score three penalties to keep them in the match at the break.

The Pumas continued to give Ireland too much room to attack in the second half, Tommy Bowe adding a fifth try seven minutes in.

File photo of Martin O'Neill and Rafa Benitez from 2009© PA Photos

Sexton claimed his second try of the afternoon, opening up a 27-point lead with less than half an hour to play.

Bowe also scored a second, giving Ireland a total of seven tries.

Argentina produced some good chances towards the end of the match, but were reduced to 14 men when Maximiliano Bustos was sin-binned for a foul on Cian Healy.

Late tries from Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe and Tomas Leonardi restored some pride for Argentina but the result was never in doubt for Ireland.

The win means Ireland will face only one other top-ranked side in the group stages of the 2015 World Cup.

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Declan Kidney
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