Ireland: (6) 6
Tries: Smyth Goals: McNamee
Scotland: (10) 20
Tries: McMillan, Reid, Simpson, Campbell Goals: Simpson (2)
Scotland Under 19’s came out on top in a tough and highly competitive away match against Ireland Under 19’s at Gormanston Park in County Meath.
In cold and windy conditions and watched by a good crowd, Ireland had the benefit of the wind in the first half and with scrum half Fach Millward steering the team around the pitch well, they put the Scotland team under pressure at the start of the game.
However, the Scotland team defended well and after 8 minutes, Scotland captain Jack McMillan opened the scoring with a powerful break through the heart of the Ireland defence. Ferg Simpson converted to give Scotland a 6 nil lead.
On 11 minutes Scotland full back, Lucas Reid added to the Scotland lead with a searing 75 metre break. Simpson failing to convert the kick from the corner into the strong wind.
The game then turned into an arm wrestle with Ireland hooker, Sam Cullen and props Sean O’Sullivan and James Mulvaney working well together and with Scotland hookers Dan May and Dylan Sykes and forwards Connor Terrill, Charlie Emslie and Elliot Campbell all showing up really well.
Playing with the wind, Ireland half backs Jack Johnson and Fach Millward used the wind well and put the Scotland back 3 of Lucas Reid, Ryan Brown and Euan Caldwell under pressure with all 3 dealing with the high ball very well.
After concerted pressure resulting in Scotland conceding a number of penalties, Ireland deservedly scored just before half time through Andrew Smyth with Fraser McNamee converting with an excellent kick from the corner. Reward for some great work from the whole team.
Ireland kicked off the second half into the strong breeze. With the wind behind them, Scotland inevitably had more territory but with the teams continuing to be very well matched, Ireland also had opportunities to put Scotland under pressure. Millward and Johnson continued to kick well into the wind, whilst the Scotland half backs, Ferg Simpson and Warren Paladino began to exert more control over the game.
With Scotland using the wind well, they finally broke through after 23 minutes of the second half, when after an excellent defensive set, stand off Ferg Simpson charged down an Irish kick, gathered the ball and after a collision between him, 2 Irish tacklers and the post, he managed to get the ball down. Very brave from all 3 players and testimony to the importance of a good post protector. Simpson converted his own try to give Scotland a 16 – 6 lead.
Scotland were now on top and 4 minutes later, prop Elliot Campbell scored again on the right edge. Simpson missing a difficult conversion.
Ireland: Ryan Curran, Eoin Creaby, James Reynolds, Andrew Smyth, Josh McNamee, Jack Johnson, Fiach Millward, Sam O’Sullivan (Captain), Sam Cullen, James Mulvaney (VC), Peter Flanagan, Kevin Varga, Jack Mallon
Interchange: Shalun Carey, Cameron Manderson, Nathan Kiernan, Ryan Higgings, Rory Wood, Marc Keating
Scotland: Lucas Reid, Euan Caldwell, Mason Cullen, Matthew Ferguson, Ryan Brown, Ferg Simpson, Fraser Gilvray, Connor Terrill, Daniel May, Jack McMillan (Captain), Kyle McCulloch, Kyle Wilson, Charlie Emslie
Interchange: Jack Grahamslaw, Dylan Sykes, Elliot Campbell, Warren Paladino, Andrew McKie