Mon 11 Jun 2018 | 09:51

Preview: It's Knock-out time

Preview: It's Knock-out time
Mon 11 Jun 2018 | 09:51
Preview: It's Knock-out time

On Tuesday, June 12, in the southern cities of Perpignan and Narbonne, the great divide of knock-out matches takes place in World Rugby’s Under-20 World Championship.

These matches are the early separations of champions from also-rans, a time of glee and a time of gloom.

There are three sets of semifinals – the ones that lead to a final for winners, the one that will lead to a battle for fifth place and the one that will lead to a play-off for ninth place.

The four semifinalists, two of whom will end up finalists, are made up for the winners of three pools and the best second-placed team – New Zealand, England and France and, the best of the rest, South Africa.

It is summer in the south of France and the matches will be played mostly in the evening.

Championship Semifinals

England vs South Africa (Stade d’Honneur du Parc des sports et de l’Amitié, Narbonne)

England were in Pool B, South Africa in Pool C.

England beat Argentina, Italy and Scotland
South Africa beat Ireland and Georgia and lost to France.

England have made nine changes to their starting team. The only ones back where they were are wing Gabriel Ibitoye, scrumhalf Ben White, locks James Scott and Joel Kpoku, and flank Ted Hill. Tom Hardwick will be starting again but at inside centre instead of flyhalf and Jordan Olowofela has moved from outside centre to left wing.

Ben Curry is back to lead the team.

There are seven changes to the South African side beaten by France. Two comeback from injuries – centre Rikus Pretorius and lock Ruan Nortjé. Two who flew from South Africa to join the team this week because of injuries to team members – flyhalf David Coetzer, after star Damian Willemse seriously injured a knee in the first match, and Durban loose forward, Phendulani Buthelezi. Then the whole front row is changed.


England: 15 Tom Parton, 14 Gabriel Ibitoye, 13 Fraser Dingwall, 12 Tom Hardwick, 11 Jordan Olowofela, 10 Marcus Smith, 9 Ben White, 8 Josh Basham, 7 Ben Curry (captain), 6 Ted Hill, 5 James Scott, 4 Joel Kpoku, 3 Joe Heyes, 2 Henry Walker, 1 Alex Seville.
Replacements: 16 Gabriel Oghre, 17 Ciaran Knight, 18 Ehren Painter, 19 Tom Willis, 20 Aaron Hinkley, 21 Rory Brand, 22 James Grayson, 23 Will Butler.

South Africa: 15 Gianni Lombard, 14 Tyrone Green, 13 Manuel Rass, 12 Rikus Pretorius, 11 Wandisile Simelane, 10 David Coetzer, 9 Zak Burger, 8 Muller Uys, 7 PJ Steenkamp, 6 Phendulani Buthelezi, 5 Ruan Nortjé, 4 Salmaan Moerat (captain), 3 Sazi Sandi, 2 Tiaan van der Merwe, 1 Alulutho Tshakweni.
Replacements: 16 Schalk Erasmus, 17 Leon Lyons, 18 Asenathi Ntlabakanye, 19 Ben-Jason Dixon, 20 Dian Schoonees, 21 Jack Hart, 22 Lubabalo Dobela, 23 Sihle Njezula.

Referee: Dan Jones (Wales)
Assistant referees: Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand), Mathieu Noirot (France)
TMO: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)

New Zealand vs France (Stade Aime-Giral, Perpignan)

France are the Under-20 Six Nations champions and believe that they can stand up to the New Zealand side which is rolling over all in its path.

New Zealand have made five changes to their starting team, including the whole of the front row. On the other hand, France have changed just their loosehead from the team that beat South Africa.

New Zealand:  15 Vilimoni Koroi, 14 Bailyn Sullivan, 13 Billy Proctor, 12 Scott Gregory, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Harry Plummer, 9 Xavier Roe, 8 Devan Flanders, 7 Tom Christie (captain), 6 Waimana Riedlinger-Kapa, 5 Will Tucker, 4 Laghlan McWannell, 3 Tevita Mafileo, 2 Flynn Thomas, 1 Xavier Numia.
16 Ricky Jackson, 17 Sione Asi, 18 Kaliopasi Uluilakepa, 19 Will Tremain, 20 Hoskins Sotutu, 21 Jay Renton, 22 Kaleb Trask, 23 Jamie Spowart.

France: 15 Clément Laporte, 14 Lucas Tauzin, 13 Pierre-Louis Barassi, 12 Romain N’Tamack, 11 Matthis Lebel, 10 Louis Carbonel, 9 Arthur Coville (captain), 8 Jordan Joseph, 7 Cameron Woki, 6 Antonin Berruyer, 5 Kilian Geraci, 4 Thomas Lavault, 3 Demba Bamba, 2 Guillaume Marchand, 1 Jean-Baptiste Gros.
Replacements: 16 Maxime Lamothe, 17 Ugo Boniface, 18 Daniel Brennan, 19 Pierre-Henri Azagoh, 20 Charlie Francoz, 21 Jules Gimbert, 22 Adrien Seguret, 23 Maxime Marty.

Referee: Karl Dickson (England)
Assistant referees: Sean Gallagher (Ireland), Andrea Piardi (Italy)
TMO: Graham Hughes (England)

5th-8th Place

Wales vs Argentina (Stade d’Honneur du Parc des sports et de l’Amitié, Narbonne)

Wales beat Australia on Day One, put up a good scrap against New Zealand and then beat Japan by a single point.

Argentina lost to England and Italy, but are a strong side. This could be a close affair.

The big changes for Wales are moving excellent kicker Cai Evans from fullback to flyhalf while wing Dewi Cross has been chosen to take Evans’s place at fullback. But it is in the pack that most changes have been made. only the captain Tommy Reffell stays in the starting team; the others are all changed.

The Pumitas have also made several changes, including both halfbacks and in the pack, there are five changes.


Wales: 15 Dewi Cross, 14 Corey Baldwin, 13 Ioan Nicholas, 12 Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, 11 Ryan Conbeer, 10 Cai Evans, 9 Dane Blacker, 8 Ben Fry, 7 Dan Davis, 6 Tommy Reffell (captain), 5 Max Williams, 4 Rhys Davies, 3 Chris Coleman, 2 Iestyn Harris, 1 Rhys Carre.
Replacements: 16 Rhys Davies, 17 Dewi Lake, 18 Will Davies-King, 19 Lewis Ellis-Jones, 20 Taine Basham, 21 Harri Morgan, 22 Ben Thomas, 23 Max Llewellyn.

Argentina: 15 Santiago Carreras, 14 Pablo Avellaneda, 13 Juan Pablo Castro, 12 Agustín Segura, 11 Mateo Carreras, 10 Joaquín de la Vega Mendía, 9 Manuel Nogués, 8 Santiago Ruiz, 7 Juan Ignacio Molina, 6 Joaquín de la Vega (captain), 5 Lucas Paulos, 4 Ignacio Gandini, 3 Lucio Sordoni, 2 Leonel Oviedo, 1 Rodrigo Martínez.
Replacements:  16 Agustín Milet, 17 Gonzalo Hughes, 18 Agustín Mansilla, 19 Salvador Ochoa, 20 Santiago Grondona, 21 Gonzalo García, 22 Juan Bautista Daireaux, 23 Santiago Chocolates.

Referee: Damon Murphy (Australia)
Assistant referees: Flavien Hourquet (France), Mathieu Noirot (France)
TMO: Graham Hughes (England)

Italy vs Australia (Stade d’Honneur du Parc des sports et de l’Amitié, Narbonne)

Italy are not a push-over. In their pool matches, they beat Scotland and Argentina, losing to England. They ended second in their pool.

Australia lost to New Zealand and Wales, beating only Japan. Their best performance was their last one, against New Zealand.

Italy has changed seven players in its starting team and another three on the bench. The halfbacks and the left wing Giovanni D’Onofrio are back as they were. The rest of the backs are changed.

Australia have four changes to their starting side that played so well in defeat to New Zealand. One of those is the captain Tate McTaggert who is on the bench. The bench has six changes.


Italy: 15 Michelangelo Biondelli, 14 Albert Einstein Batista, 13 Andrea De Masi, 12 Francesco Modena, 11 Giovanni D’Onofrio, 10 Filippo did Marco, 9 Nicolò Casilio, 8 Lodovico Manni, 7 Michele Lamaro (captain), 6 Davide Ruggeri, 5 Edoardo Iachizzi, 4 Niccolò Cannone, 3 Michele Mancini Parri, 2 Matteo Luccardi, 1 Guido Romano.
Replacements: 16 Niccolò Taddia, 17 Leonardo Mariottini, 18 Matteo Nocera, 19 Matteo Canali, 20 Antoine Koffi, 21 Luca Crosato, 22 Antonio Rizzi, 23 Alessandro Fusco.

Australia:  15 Lawson Creighton, 14 Matt McTaggert, 13 Semisi Tupou, 12 Bayley Kuenzle, 11 Jordan Petaia, 10 Hamish Stewart, 9 Ryan Lonergan, 8 Pat Tafa, 7 Fraser McReight, 6 Michael Wood, 5 Harry Hockings, 4 Angus Blyth, 3 Tom Ross, 2 Efi Maafu, 1 Harry Hoopert.
Replacements: 16 Matt Faessler, 17 George Francis, 18 Charlie Hancock, 19 Hugh Margin, 20 Rory Suttor, 21 Tate McDermott, 22 Will Harrison, 23 Mack Hansen.

Referee: Pali Deluca (Argentina)
Assistant referees: Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand), Flavien Hourquet (France)
TMO: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)

9th-12th Place

Ireland vs Scotland (Stade Aime-Giral, Perpignan)

Ireland are so far without a victory in the tournament but then they have been in the most c competitive pool.

In the Under-20 Six Nations, Ireland beat Scotland 30-25, which may not be all that significant as in the same Six Nations Scotland beat England but lost to them in this tournament.

For this match, Scotland has made changes. In fact, the only players starting who are the same places as they were in the last match, against England, are prop Finlay Richardson and captain Robbie Smith.


Scotland: 15 Paddy Dewhirst, 14 Logan Trotter, 13 Cameron Hutchison, 12 Stafford McDowall, 11 Kyle Rowe, 10 Callum McLelland, 9 Charlie Chapman, 8 Devante Onojaife, 7 Rory Darge, 6 Martin Hughes, 5 Marshall Sykes, 4 Jamie Hodgson, 3 Finlay Richardson, 2 Robbie Smith (captain), 1 Sam Grahamslaw.
Replacements: 16 Finlay Scott, 17 Ross Dunbar, 18 Murphy Walker, 19 Charlie Jupp, 20 Guy Graham, 21 Charlie Gowling, 22 Ross Thompson, 23 Fraser Strachan.

Ireland: 15 Michael Silvester, 14 James Hume, 13 Sean O’Brien, 12 Peter Sylvester, 11 Tommy O’Brien, 10 Harry Byrne, 9 Hugh O’Sullivan, 8 Caelan Doris (captain), 7 Matthew Agnew, 6 Joe Dunleavy, 5 Jack Dunne, 4 Matthew Dalton, 3 Joe Byrne, 2 Diarmuid Barron, 1 Jordan Duggan.
Replacements: 16 Dan Sheehan, 17 Bryan O’Connor, 18 Jakub Wojtkowicz, 19 Charlie Ryan, 20 Jack Daly, 21 Jonny Stewart, 22 Conor Dean, 23 Tom Roche.

Referee: Egon Seconds (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Jonathan Gasnier (France), Stéphane Coullon (France)
TMO: Philippe Bonhoure (France)

Georgia vs Japan (Stade Aime-Giral, Perpignan)

Georgia is a strong side, able to tackle fiendishly as Ireland know full well.  Japan can take heart for their narrow defeat by Wales in their last match.


Georgia: 15 Beka Mamukashvili, 14 Deme Tapladze, 13 Giorgi Tsiklauri, 12 Lasha Lomidze, 11 Otar Dzagnidze, 10 Tedo Abzhandadze, 9 Gela Aprasidze, 8 Arsen Machaladze, 7 Sandro Mamamtavrishvili, 6 Tornike Jalaghonia, 5 Lasha Jaiani, 4 Beka Saghinadze (captain), 3 Luka Japaridze, 2 Levan Papidze, 1 Guram Gogichashvili.

Replacements: 16 Tengiz Zamtaradze, 17 Giorgi Nutsubidze, 18 Lucs Azariashvili, 19 Luca Gelashvili, 20 Tengiz Gigolashvili, 21 Luka Dvalishvili, 22 Temur Tchitchinadze, 23 Kote Marjanishvili.

Japan:  15 Kyohei Yamasawa, 14 Halatoa Vailea, 13 Sioeli Vakalahi, 12 Yuto Mori, 11 Siosaia Fifita, 10 Hiroto Mamada, 9 Shinobu Fujiwara, 8 Asipeli Moala, 7 Hisanobu Okayama (captain), 6 Kai Yamamoto, 5 Ryuga Hashimoto, 4 Kanji Shimokawa, 3 Rento Tsukayama, 2 Miyu Arai, 1 Gakuto Ishida.
Replacements: 16 Yuichiro Taniguchi, 17 Yusuke Yamada, 18 Shohei Oyama, 19 Kaito Aibe, 20 Shota Fukui, 21 Atora Hondo, 22 Itsuki Kodama, 23 Yu Saruta.

Referee: Ludovic Cayre (France)
Assistant referees: Sean Gallagher (Ireland), Andrea Piardi (Italy)
TMO: Philippe Bonhoure (France)

Previous results

Round One results:
New Zealand vs Japan, 67-0
Wales vs Australia 26-21
England vs Argentina, 29-18
Italy vs Scotland, 27-26
South Africa vs Georgia, 33-27
France vs Ireland, 26-25

Round Two results:
New Zealand vs Wales, 42-10
Australia vs Japan, 54-19
Argentina vs Scotland, 29-13
England vs Italy, 43-5
South Africa vs Ireland, 30-17
France vs Georgia, 24-12

Round Three results:
New Zealand vs Australia, 27-18
Wales vs Japan, 18-17
England vs Scotland, 35-10
Italy vs Argentina, 30-26
France vs South Africa, 46-29
Georgia vs Ireland, 24-20

PV: 1580

Preview: It's Knock-out Time | Rugby365