Preview: U20 6N - Grand Slam for Ireland?
Ireland for the Grand Slam? They are unassailably top of the Six Nations Under-20 log for 2019, the only unbeaten team in the competition as it reaches its final three matches.
They have beaten France in No.2 position and England in No.3 position and now play Wales who are fourth. Wales beat England but lost to France and, surprisingly, Scotland. Wales play hosts to Ireland, up north in Colwyn Bay, not far from the shortest distance between Wales and Ireland.
One wonders why all three of these are night games – in the cold of the mad March days with rain at two of the three venues. When each of the three matches kicks off, the temperature is expected to be below 10°C.
Fixtures for Round 5
The matches will be played on Friday, 15 March 2019
Wales vs Ireland at Stadium Zip World (Parc Eirias), Colwyn Bay
Italy vs France at Stadio Pozzi La Marmora, Piedmont
England vs Scotland at Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton
Log after Round 4
1. Ireland with 18 points
2. France with 12 points
3. England with 11 points
4. Wales with 10 points
5. Scotland with 6 points
6. Italy with 5 points
Ireland vs England 35-27
Italy vs Scotland, 32-22
France vs Wales, 32-10
Ireland vs Scotland, 24-5
Wales vs Italy, 42-12
England vs France, 31-19
Wales vs England, 11-10
Ireland vs Italy, 34-14
France vs Scotland, 42-27
Ireland vs France, 31-29
Scotland vs Wales, 27-20
England vs Italy, 35-10
Round 4 Details
Wales vs Ireland
In the fourth round, Ireland won by two points, while Wales lost by one point. An Irish victory is no certainty.
Ireland have made just one change to their starting team with Harry Byrne back at flyhalf while last week’s flyhalf, Ben Healy, settles on the bench.
By way of contrast, Wales have seven changes to the team beaten up in Scotland. There are five changes to the backs with only inside centre and scrumhalf, Aneurin Owen and Dafydd Buckland, standing firm. The forwards are more gently treated with changes only at loosehead and lock. Rhys Davies comes back to loosehead in the place of Kemsley Mathias and Ed Scragg moves up from the bench in a swap with Jac Price.
Ireland: 15 Jake Flannery, 14 Angus Kernohan, 13 Liam Turner, 12 Sean French, 11 Jonathan Wren, 10 Harry Byrne, 9 Craig Casey, 8 John Hodnett, 7 Scott Penny, 6 Martin Moloney, 5 Niall Murray, 4 Charlie Ryan (captain), 3 Thomas Clarkson, 2 Dylan Tierney-Martin, 1 Josh Wycherley
Replacements: 16 John McKee, 17 Callum Reid, 18 Ryan Lomas, 19 Ryan Baird, 20 David McCann, 21 Cormac Foley, 22 Ben Healy, 23 Rob Russell
Wales: 15 Cai Evans, 14 Tomi Lewis, 13 Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, 12 Aneurin Owen, 11 Ioan Davies, 10 Sam Costelow, 9 Dafydd Buckland, 8 Iestyn Rees, 7 Jac Morgan, 6 Ellis Thomas, 5 Teddy Williams, 4 Ed Scragg, 3 Ben Warren, 2 Dewi Lake (captain), 1 Rhys Davies
Replacements: 16 Will Griffiths, 17 Tom Devine, 18 Nick English, 19 Jac Price, 20 Ioan Rhys Davies, 21 Dan Babos, 22 Max Llewellyn, 23 Ryan Conbeer
Date: Friday, 15 March 2019
Venue: Stadiwm Zip World (Parc Eirias), Colwyn Bay
Expected weather conditions: Cold and wet. Rain with a high of 10°C, dropping to 6°C
Referee: Christophe Ridley (England)
Assistant referees: Jack Makepeace (England), Neil Chivers (England)
Television match official: Stuart Terheege (England)
Citing commissioner: Beth Dickens (Scotland)
England vs Scotland
England would be expected to win this comfortably despite Scotland’s much celebrated victory over Wales last week. Those things of who beat whom do not really add up to much. After all, Wales beat England and Scotland beat Wales – but it does not mean that Scotland will beat England.
The only England back where he was in the starting XV is scrumhalf Ollie Fox. And half the pack has gone with only 5 to 8 back where they were. Richard Capstick is the only survivor on the bench!
Scotland have made just one change to the team that broke its duck against Wales and that was forced by injury. South African Kwagga van Niekerk is out injured. Jack Mann of Edinburgh Accies takes Van Niekerk’s placer and Teddy Leatherbarrow comes onto the bench in the place of Mann
England: 15 Tom de Glanville, 14 Ollie Hassell-Collins, 13 Ollie Lawrence, 12 Cameron Redpath, 11 Arron Reed, 10 Manu Vunipola, 9 Ollie Fox, 8 Rusiate Tuima, 7 Aaron Hinkley, 6 Tom Willis, 5 James Scott, 4 Alex Coles, 3 Joe Heyes, 2 Samson Ma’asi, 1 Kai Owen
Replacements: 16 Alfie Barbeary, 17 Olly Adkins, 18 Alfie Petch, 19 Jon Kpoku, 20 Richard Capstick, 21 Gus Warr, 22 Kieran Wilkinson, 23 Josh Hodge.
Scotland: 15 Matt Davidson, 14 Rory McMichael, 13 Cameron Anderson, 12 Robbie McCallum, 11 Jack Blain, 10 Ross Thompson, 9 Roan Frostwick, 8 Jack Mann, 7 Connor Boyle (captain), 6 Charlie Jupp, 5 Cameron Henderson, 4 Ewan Johnson, 3 Euan McLaren, 2 Ewan Ashman, 1 Murphy Walker
Replacements: 16 Angus Fraser, 17 Andrew Nimmo, 18 Will Hurd, 19 Ross Bundy, 20 Teddy Leatherbarrow, 21 Nathan Chamberlain, 22 Nathan Chamberlain, 23 Ollie Smith
Date: Friday, 15 March 2019
Venue: Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton
Expected weather conditions: Cold and wet. Rain with a high of 12°C and a low of 7°C
Referee: Sean Gallagher (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Frank Murphy (Ireland), Robert O’Sullivan (Ireland)
Television match official: Brian MacNeice (Ireland)
Timekeeper: Paul Stanley (England)
Italy vs France
Italy have changed just three. Michele Peruzzo and Andrea Chianucci are out and Federico Mori is dropped to the bench.
France have done better than all the rest with nine changes to the team just beaten – 31-29 – by Ireland but then France had gone into the tournament with high hopes as the reigning Six Nations and World Junior Champions. Defeat came hard.
Italy: 15 Jacopo Trulla, 14 Cristian Lai, 13 Matteo Moscardi, 12 Damiano Mazza, 11 Michael Mba, 10 Paolo Garbisi, 9 Lorenzo Citton, 8 Mirco Finotto, 7 Davide Ruggeri, 6 Davide Goldin, 5 Thomas Parolo, 4 Cristian Stoian, 3 Matteo Nocera, 2 Andrej Marinello, 1 Matteo Drudi
Replacements: 16 Marco Bonanni, 17 Lorenzo Michelini, 18 Filippo Alongi, 19 Marco Butturini, 20 Antoine Koffi, 21 Alessandro Fusco, 22 Giacomo Da Re, 23 Federico Mori
France: 15 Cheikh Tiberghien, 14 Vincent Pinto, 13 Yoram Moefana, 12 Arthur Vincent (captain), 11 Ethan Dumortier, 10 Mathieu Smaïli, 9 Kévin Viallard, 8 Maxence Lemardelet, 7 Sacha Zegueur, 6 Mathieu Hirigoyen, 5 Florent Vanverberghe, 4 Gauthier Maravat, 3 Alex Burin, 2 Loris Zarantonello, 1 Sami Zouhair
Replacements: 16 Rayne Barka, 17 Eli Eglaine, 18 Sacha Lotrian, 19 Adrien Warion, 20 Loïc Hocquet, 21 Leo Coly, 22 Thomas Vincent, 23 Alexandre De Nardi
Date: Friday, 15 March 2019
Venue: Stadio Pozzi La Marmora, Biella, Piedmont
Expected weather conditions: Cold. Partly cloudy, no rain, with a high of 19°C, dropping to 7°C
Referee: Ben Blain (Scotland)
Assistant referees: Mike Adamson (Scotland), Ross Mabon (Scotland)
Citing commissioner: Paul Minto (Scotland)