England’s U20s follow seniors’ example

England U20 beat Scotland Futures 66-19 at Kingston Park yesterday following the senior international, and despite a gutsy performance from the young Scots.

Published by John Birch, March 26th, 2023

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England’s U20s follow seniors’ example

Photo: Connor McGoverne. Report: Scotland Rugby

England opened the scoring with as Amy Dale crashed over the line on the back of a strong driving maul [5-0].

It wasn’t long until England were back on the scoreboard, as a break from Maisy Allen saw the back-rower sprint down the pitch to score, with Lizzy Duffy adding the extras [12-0].

Scotland got their first opportunity on the 14thminute, when Evie Tonkin burst through the defence, evading numerous defenders, before dotting down over the whitewash [12-5].

The hosts immediately retaliated, as Niamh Orchard powered over from close range, with Duffy helping to extend the lead [19-5].

Scotland rallied on the 22ndminute, as a brilliant interception from Roma Fraser saw the full-back sprint 60m down the pitch to score, with Carla McDonald adding the extras [19-12].

England hit back with another solid driving maul, with Amy Dale grabbing her second try of the match, with Duffy slotting the conversion through the posts [26-12].

Buoyed by the scoreboard, England were back on the attack and were able to capitalise when Grace Clifford punctured over the line from short range [31-12].

Scotland’s fighting spirit was on display in the closing stages of the first-half, as Isabella Hannay cruised past the defence to score, with a successful conversion from McDonald [31-19].

HALF-TIME: England U20s 31-19 Scottish Futures

England strengthened their position in the game when Duffy slipped through the blue shirts to score, with the stand-off converting her own score [38-19].

There were some promising attacks from the young Scots, but the side were left rueing some missed opportunities when Maisy Allen intercepted a pass, before cantering down the pitch to score, with Duffy slotting through the tricky conversion [45-19].

The hosts kept the scoreboard ticking, as Niamh Williams crossed the line, with April Ashida soon joining her on the scoresheet. Duffy was successful with both conversions [59-19].

As the game approached the final whistle, Ashida was able to clinch a second try as she raced into the corner, with Duffy finding target with the conversion [66-19].

Scotland were on the move in the final moments of the game but were unable to break through the solid defence, as England claimed victory in Newcastle.

Post match interviews withMaisy AllenandLizzie Duffy

FULL-TIME: England U20s 66-19 Scottish Futures

England U20s: Leah Brough; Katie Buchanan, Nancy McGillivray, Phillipa Hendy, Francesca Goldthorp; Lizzie Duffy, Tori Sellors; Catherine Wells, Amy Dale, Grace Clifford, Lilli Ives Campion, Lola Whitley, Niamh Orchard, Maisy Allen, Gabriella Nigrelli.

Replacements: Niamh Swailes, Katherine Baverstock, Niahm Williams, Kendall Waudby, Nicole Wythe, Steph Else, Lucy Heryet , Lucy Weaver, Reneeqa Bonner, Sophie Langford, April Ishida

Scottish Futures: Roma Fraser; Cieron Bell, Holly McIntyre CAPTAIN, Rachel Philipps, Evie Tonkin; Carla McDonald, Rhea Clarke; Poppy Fletcher, Nikki Simpson, Molly Poolman, Emma Turner, Natasha Logan, Alex Stewart, Isabella Hannay, Freya Walker

Replacements: Siobhann McGinley, Katie Lindsay, Aimee Johnston, Eve Thomson, Samaanther Taganekurkuru, Rachel Law, Ceitidh Ainsworth, Ellie Henderson, Sky Phimister, Emma Campbell.