Friday 22 September 2017

Scots dish out 'devastating' second defeat for U-20s

Scotland 32 Ireland 28

Boyle: “Scotland are a good physical side and they just came out on top in the end. The loss at the end was devastating.” Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Boyle: “Scotland are a good physical side and they just came out on top in the end. The loss at the end was devastating.” Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

Ireland need to beat New Zealand in their final pool game at the World Rugby U-20 Championships to avoid their worst finish in seven attempts following Scotland's bonus-point win over Peter Malone's charges.

Jack Kelly ran in two second-half tries, while scrum-half Jack Stafford scored a clever try on his debut, but Ireland were swept aside by Scotland's freedom to attack and their impressive offloading game.

After defeat to Italy in their opening game, the World Cup in Georgia has been a tough task for the young Irish side, but their captain Paul Boyle is hopeful that they can lift their challenge against the Baby Blacks.

"Scotland are a good physical side and they just came out on top in the end. The loss at the end was devastating," said Boyle (pictured).

"That's two losses for us now and we have another game to get back now and make up for it. We have to go and regroup, but we believe we can (beat New Zealand)."

Scotland knew that they needed a bonus-point win to have any hopes of making the semis, but despite their early bluster Scotland couldn't impact the scoreboard, and in the blistering heat it wasn't until the 18th minute that the first score arrived when Conor Dean chipped over a close-range penalty.

Moments earlier Calvin Nash's accurate grubber kick almost led to a try for Gavin Mullin, but Ireland got the reward they deserved when Stafford's quick-tap penalty saw the Shannon man barge through three tacklers to score.

Ireland looked in total control, but it was Scotland that finished the half brightly. Firstly a great break by Blair Kinghorn was only stopped by Stafford's ankle-tap tackle, but in the 29th minute the Scots ran in a remarkable try when they broke from their own 22, and eventually Ross McCann dived over for the score.

The pressure was on Malone's side after that and after the concession of a couple of penalties in sight of their line, Fraser Renwick scored off the back of a rolling maul for a 12-10 half-time lead.

After an early exchange of penalties the second half sprung to life when Scotland ran in their third try. Another scything break from Kinghorn was halted just short of the line, but Darcy Graham finished off the score on the left for a 22-13 lead.

By the 58th minute Ireland were back in the hunt though when Kelly charged through and Alan Tynan converted to trim the lead to two points.

But the bonus-point try arrived 18 minutes from time when Connor Eastgate made the most of Callum Hunter-Hill's line-break to score, while Robbie Nairn complete the win.

 

Scotland - B Kinghorn (J Henderson 43-49 HIA); R Nairn, R McCann, S McDowall, D Graham; C Eastgate, A Simmers (C Shiel 45); G Thornton (R Dunbar 78), F Renwick (R Smith 77), A Nicol (F Bradbury 65), A Craig (H Bain 65), C Hunter-Hill (c); B Flockhart (T Dodd 23), L Crosbie, M Fagerson.

Ireland - A Tynan; J Kelly, G Mullin, C Frawley, C Nash (M Silvester 55); C Dean (A Curtis 55) (C Dean 70 HIA), J Stafford (J Stewart 65); J Duggan (A Moloney 63), R Kelleher (G McGrath 63), C Connolly (P Cooper 38); F Wycherley (O Dowling 77 HIA), O Dowling (J Regan 63); S Masterson (G Coombes h-t), P Boyle (c), C Doris.

Ref - Dan Jones (Wales)

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