Young Scots Humbled On Home Soil

Scotland under-20 were undone by their Welsh counterparts in the age-grade 6 Nations in front of a 1300 crowd at Bridgehaugh tonight (33-3).

A decent showing from the hosts kept the game tight right up to the interval however an error-strewn second-half and back-to-back sin-bins meant Scotland struggled with a physical Welsh side which ran in four second-half scores.

After a sticky start Scotland were offered the first opportunity to take the lead with a penalty kick.

Scotland under-20 were undone by their Welsh counterparts in the age-grade 6 Nations in front of a 1300 crowd at Bridgehaugh tonight (33-3).

A decent showing from the hosts kept the game tight right up to the interval however an error-strewn second-half and back-to-back sin-bins meant Scotland struggled with a physical Welsh side which ran in four second-half scores.

After a sticky start Scotland were offered the first opportunity to take the lead with a penalty kick.

Mark Bennett’s first effort was just wide however three minutes later the young Ayr man was offered the same chance, this time just inside the half, which he booted through the sticks, 3-0.

Wales stand-off Steven Shingler missed a long-range effort in response before Scotland hooker Richard Ferguson failed to capitalise on a half chance in front of the sticks.

After charging down a rushed Welsh clearance kick he dove to smother the loose ball while getting a toe on it could have knocked it through for a goal line scramble.

Despite good Scottish pressure, the momentum began to swing in Wales’ direction, particularly evident in Scotland’s once competitive scrum which had started to waver.

With seven minutes to go, Welsh dominance deep in Scotland territory saw them earn their first try.

Camped on the five metre line they scrummed and re-scrummed until the forwards spun out of the pack, repeated a few phases and put through blind-side flanker Ed Siggery who battered over.

Shingler added the extras to make it 3-7 to the visitors before he missed a kickable penalty to  put any serious distance between the sides at the break.

HALF TIME: 3-7

The second-half was a much different story as the Welsh dominated the match, and particularly the set-piece, to run in three tries in the first fifteen minutes.

It took just five minutes for man of the match winning prop Will Griff John to break through the Scottish defence for the unconverted score, followed by a second from centre Owen Williams who capitalised on a spilled ball.

His centre partner, Ben John, smashed in to Bennett who spilled the ball up and out of contact, allowing Williams to snatch the ball and run in the score.

Shingler converted before booting his side into good field position from which they scored their third in quarter of an hour.

A good Welsh line-out, backed up by nice passing movement, allowed winger Eli Walker to cross at the far corner. Shingler added the interest once more, 3-26.

With a such a dramatic change to the scoreboard in such a short space of time Scotland were going to have to dig deep to salvage the tie.

However their indiscipline meant that the majority of the team would have to play through another torrid 20 as two of their colleagues were handed consecutive sin binnings - the first to second-row Mitchell Todd who then returned to the field as back-row Robin Hislop trudged off in the opposite direction.

The final nail in the coffin came as Welsh substitute Ieuan Davies scored the fourth and final try and replacement stand-off Joseff Griffin converted to end the scoring in a dissapointing night for Scotland before tempers flared between the sides and staright red cards were handed to either side (Scotland full-back Glenn Bryce and Wales back-row Luke Hamilton).


Scotland team: Glenn Bryce; Mike Doneghan, Stuart Hogg, Mark Bennett, Kerr Gossman; Harry Leonard, Jamie Stevenson; Robin Hislop, Richard Ferguson, George Hunter CAPTAIN, Mitchell Todd, Robert McAlpine, Alex Spence, Hamish Watson, James Tyas
Substitutes: David Cherry on for Ferguson, Colin Phillips on for Hunter, Andy Kirkland, Mitch Eadie on for Spence, Sean Kennedy on Stevenson, Craig Jackson, Tom Steven

Wales team: Liam Williams; Adam Warren, Ben John, Owen Williams, Eli Walker; Steven Shingler, Johnathan Evans; Rhodri Jones, Sam Parry, Will Griff John, Macauley Cook CAPTAIN, Cory Hill, Ed Siggery, Luke Hamilton, Ben Thomas 
Substitutes: Ieuan Davies on for Parry, Will Taylor for Jones, Matthew Screech for Cook, Owen Shepeard on for Siggery, Lewis Jones on for Evans, Joseff Griffin for Shingler, Jack Gadd on for Williams

Referee: Laurent Cardona (FFR)
TJ1: Eric Soulan (FFR)
TJ2: Jean Marie Piraveau (FFR)