Scots much improved as edged by England

Scotland under-18 were defeated by three tries to two in their semi final game against England at the FIRA-AER Justin Bridou championship this evening (Tuesday 26 March). The 25-12 scoreline showed a much improved performance by the young Scots since they last met England, just over three weeks ago, the two tries coming from North Berwick boys Ruaraidh Smith and Reece Patterson (pictured).

Scotland U18 take on Ireland nextHead coach Eddie Pollock said: "Compared to the last time we met, this was a real game of rugby; our scrum was excellent, there was great defensive work and we came right back at them in the last fifteen minutes."

Scotland now meet Ireland on Saturday (k/o 2pm GMT) in the play-off for third place at Stade des Alpes in Grenoble.

An early penalty to England, slotted by Sharp, put the Scots 3-0 down, a score which remained for much of the first half until England scored a penalty, a try and conversion just before the break, to make it 13-0 at half time. England then scored two tries, one converted, early in the second half, before the Scots rallied to the full and answered with two tries and a conversion from Gavin Lowe.
 
Pollock said: "We'd had lots of ball but our lineout malfunctioned and we missed a few throws. Our scrum was excellent, however, we put in great defensive work and made a lot of double tackles.
 
"England scored a breakaway try early in the second half but we came right back at them in the last 15 minutes. Gavin Lowe hit a great line to put Ruaraidh Smith over for a score then Reece Patterson scored from a driving lineout."
 
Lowe then converted the second try to adjust the scoreline to 25-12 by the final whistle.
 
Pollock added: "We've come on in leaps and bounds in the last few weeks and I thought we played pretty well. We just need to play more at this level."
 
Scotland now meet Ireland on Saturday (k/o 2pm GMT) in the play-off for third place at Stade des Alpes in Grenoble. 
 

Scotland under-18 v England under-18, Justin Bridou elite division FIRA-AER championship 2013

15. Gavin Parker (Merchiston Castle School/Biggar)
14. Ruaraidh Smith (Oakham School)
13. Richard Taylor (Loretto/Melrose) * (c)
12. Rory Watt (Edinburgh Accies)

11. Iain Sim (Duns)
10. Henry Slater (Merchiston Castle School)
9. Luke Earle-Wright (Robert Gordon's College/Aberdeen GSFP)

1. Reece Patterson (North Berwick HS)
2. Ross Graham (Hawick PSA)
3. Angus Wallace (Aberdeen GSFP)
4. Lewis Carmichael (North Berwick HS/North Berwick)
5. Neil Irvine-Hess (George Watson's College) *

6. Scott Burnside (North Berwick HS) *
7. Rory Simpson (Edinburgh Academy)
8. Ally Miller (George Watson's College) *

Substitutes

16. Grant Stewart (Dalziel) * (on for Graham, 48m)
17. Cameron Fenton (Strathallan/Howe of Fife) *
18. Rory Mason (Ashfield Academy/Paviors) (on for Wallace, 62m)
19. James Ritchie (Strathallan) * (on for Burnside, 44m)
21. Ben Johnston (Marr College) * (on for Carmichael, 62m)
22. Ben Vellacott (Ivybridge College/Barnstable) (on for Earle-Wright, 35m)
23. James Lang (London Scottish)
24. Archie Russell (Stirling County) (on for Sim, 38m)
25. Angus Rennie (Gordon Schools Huntly/Aberdeen GSFP) (on for Watt, 55m)
26. Gavin Lowe (Ayr) * (on for Parker, 35m)

Scores:
Tries - Smith (65m), Patterson (68m)
Conversion - Lowe (69m)

Not considered due to injury: Magnus Bradbury (Merchiston Castle School/Oban Lorne); Andrew McWilliam (Edinburgh Academy/Currie) *; George Horne (Strathallan/Howe of Fife) * ; Karl Main (Dunbar GS/Dunbar) *

*Scottish Institute of Sport supported player 2012/13

Attendance: 1000
Referee: B Whitehouse (WRU)