Scotland Under-19s were unfortunate to lose 19-13 to Italy U19s in an enthralling game at The Greenyards. Jonny Smart scored a try for the Scotland youngsters while Stephen McColl hit eight points with the boot but it was to no avail as the visitors claimed the win in Melrose. SCOTLAND UNDER-19s 13 ITALY UNDER-19s 19
Scotland Under-19s were unfortunate to lose 19-13 to Italy U19s in an enthralling game at The Greenyards.
Jonny Smart scored a try for the Scotland youngsters while Stephen McColl hit eight points with the boot.
But Italy claimed the win with the help of a late try by No. 8 Rudolf Mernone.
Some great passing between McColl, Chris Kinloch and Smart almost saw Scotland take an early lead but a great tackle from Alberto Chiesa denied the opportunity to Smart.
But a fine claim in the line-out from Josh Brown allowed Scotland to clear their lines while under some Italian pressure.
However, Italy gained the advantage as two quick penalties from Riccardo Bocchino gave the visitors a 6-0 lead.
Scotland fought back though and, again, Brown was first to the ball in the line-out to set up Smart and James Murray to gain ground.
Neale Patrick was then on hand in the line-out to palm the ball to Ross Samson who, in turn, found McColl and his pass was picked up by Smart to cross the line.
McColl converted to give the host nation a 7-6 lead after 26 minutes.
A McColl penaty soon edged the host nation further ahead before Bocchino clawed the Italians back into the game at 10-9 just before the interval.
HT: Scotland Under-19s 10 Italy Under-19s 9
McColl skewed an early second-half penalty wide before atoning for that miss with a 35-metre strike to give Scotland a 13-9 lead.
But Italy were also keen to impress and No. 8 Rudolf Mernone crossed the line in the 44th minute to reduce the deficit to one point before a Bocchino conversion gave Italy the lead.
Scotland then piled the pressure on the Italian side as they sought to regain the lead.
However, Italy substitute Marcello Magri was on hand to clear his lines after sustained efforts from the host nation.
In the 66th minute though, Italy sealed the win with another Bocchino penalty to complete the scoring at 19-13.
Scotland Under-19 head coach Peter Wright said: â€œWe played well so it was very frustrating to lose.
â€œBut a lot of things did go well for us.
â€œWe can take positives from this and we will look at them during the week.â€