England and France survived unbeaten on a topsy-turvy second day at the U18 Six Nations Festival
Italian joy after their first win in the U18 Festival
The day began under spring sunshine as Ireland took on Scotland. Ireland had had a good first day, pushing France hard and then beating Italy, while Scotland has lost to Wales and England. Scotland had the stronger pack, but a scrum infringement in the third minute gave Ireland the advantage, and a try for Lilly Morris, well converted by Caitriona Finn, whose kicking had impressed on Day 1/ A huge gap in the Scottish line opened up for Lucia Linn a few minutes later, and Ireland lead 12-0 after 10 minutes.
Hannah Dunnet’s quick thinking at the back of a ruck pulled a try back for Scotland midway through the game, but the 24th minute a perfectly timed Crossfield kick put Emma Brogan in for a third Irish try. Two more tries followed in the final minute to give Ireland a 31-5 win.
Ireland were straight on again for match two, this time against unbeaten England. Daisy Aspinall ended some great English interplay to get the junior Red Roses on the board after four minutes. Ella Cromack used the wind perfectly for the conversion from near the touchline. Ireland responded well and nearly scored only a few minutes later but for a forward pass. Most of the next 20 minutes were played inside England’s half, but without any reward for Ireland, but as soon as England escaped they were able to double their lead through Amelia Williams. Lilly Morris finally got Ireland some reward in the final minute, England winning 12-5.
The final game of the morning saw France take on Scotland, and resulted in another big French win, 44-0.
Conditions for the afternoon could not have been more different, the temperature dropped and the blue skies were replaced by rain. England began against Italy. Italy had failed to score a point on Day One, but seemed to thrive in the more challenging conditions. It took 10 minutes for England to finally break them down, Connie Clarke making the most of a well-placed kick by Millie Hyett. Another by Hyett caused all sorts of Problems for Italy after 19 minutes, Daisy Aspinall making the most of some defensive errors. But Chiara Cheli pulled a try back for Italy four minutes later, closing the score to 10-7, but the boot of Hyett was the difference again in the 28th minute, spotting a gap that Clarke ran into for her second score. England won 15-7.
The fifth game of the day saw Wales take on France in a game where the Welsh dominated almost every aspect of the game but could not score. France, on the other hand, made the most of their short period on the attack, Mariam Niakat getting the game’s only score.
Finally Wales took on Italy in a game that was deadlocked for the first 20 minutes before an Italian turnover suddenly gave Italy an opportunity which they took, Chiara Cheli scoring under the posts. And that was the game’s only score, Italy winning 7-0.
Day 2 results
Scotland U18 5-31 Ireland U18
England U18 14-5 Ireland U18
France U18 44-0 Scotland U18
England U18 15-7 Italy U18
Wales U18 0-7 France U18
Italy U18 7-0 Wales U18