Scotland under-20 lost their second IRB TOSHIBA Junior World Championship match to England in the Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium, Tokyo, today (30 - 7).
Despite dominating possession in the first-half, Scotland were astonishingly 0-20 down at half time to a very powerful, clinical and professional English outfit who scored four tries to Scotland’s one over the piece.
Tom Homer got England on the scoresheet early with a 50 metre penalty before Charlie Sharples capitalised on an Ashleah McCulloch fumble at the base of a ruck and sprinted in for the converted score.
Scotland responded well however with repeated phase and possession play and progressed deep into English territory. The final phase made its way out wide to Alex Dunbar who was brought down five metres from the line.
England’s second converted effort of the half came from Gloucester Rugby’s Henry Trinder before Homer notched his second penalty to complete the half.
Half time: 20 - 0
England came out of the starting blocks and scored after just two minutes when captain Luke Eves crossed the line for an unconverted score after a prolonged attack.
Scotland again battled their way back into the English half and created their clearest scoring opportunity of the game when the ball found its way to Ashleah McCulloch in space but the young centre agonisingly knocked on metres from the try line.
England then scored their fourth and final try through Josh Ovens before Scotland were finally - and justifiably - rewarded for their lung-busting efforts when replacement scrum-half Peter Jericevich crossed the whitewash. Full-back Peter Horne converted.
Scotland under-20 head coach, Rob Moffat, said: “Every player put in a big shift today and their work rate was excellent.
“Despite being 20 nil down at half time we played a lot of good rugby. Our problem was that we just didn’t capitalise on our opportunities.
“I’m glad we finally got something from the game, which was certainly deserved, and rewarded the good play with points. We created a lot more against England than we did in the 6 Nations but I think that our backs need to be a bit more direct.
“Once they got to 25-0 up we took some of our key players off and gave some of our younger players a chance and I’m delighted to say that they really stood up and made a good case for selection.”
Scotland under-20 are next in action against Japan at the Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium on Saturday 13 June (kick-off 7.05am BST).
Scotland under-20 team v England
Peter Horne (Glasgow Warriors); Grant Anderson (Ayr)*, Ashleah McCulloch (Aberdeen Grammar Rugby) **, Robbie Johnston (Leeds University/Leeds Carnegie), Alex Dunbar (Selkirk) **; Robbie McGowan (Stirling County), Henry Pyrgos (Wimbourne); Dougie Orr (Haddington) **, Finlay Gillies (Heriot’s) **, David Morton (Bridgwater and Albion), Nick Campbell (Glasgow Hawks) **, Richie Gray (Glasgow Warriors) CAPTAIN, Ryan Wilson (London Scottish), Stuart McInally (Watsonians)*, Chris Fusaro (Heriot’s)*
Substitutes (all used)
Gavin Cameron (Stirling County) **, Grant Shiells (Kelso), Grant Gilchrist (Stirling County)*, Robert Harley (West of Scotland) **, Struan Dewar (Heriot’s) **, Peter Jericevich (Glasgow Hawks)*, Steven Aitken (Aberdeen Grammar Rugby) **
* Denotes a member of the Scottish National Contracted Academy
** Denotes a member of the Scottish Rugby National Academy supported by the Scottish Institute of Sport
Pool B, Tokyo, Prince Chichibu Memorial (as it stands)
W D L Points
2 0 0 10
2 0 0 9
0 0 2 1
0 0 2 1
Scotland under-20 continuing match schedule
Saturday 13 June: Japan v Scotland, Tokyo (kick-off 7.05am BST)