Narrow defeat for Scots in tournament opener

Scotland under-18s put up a brave fight in their opening match of the U18 International Series in Wales this afternoon.Rory McMichael scored for Scotland U18

Ally Donaldson's side scored three tries, but their Welsh hosts came out on top 31-30 in Swansea.

In the first-half Cameron Hutchison went over with Ben Appleson converting and kicking two penalties.

At half-time Wales were ahead 28-13.

In the second period Scotland scored early through a penalty by Appleson before Rory McMichael went over and Appleson kicked the conversion.

Wales kicked a penalty to put them 31-23 in front and as the game neared a close Scotland's Fraser Strachan went over and Appleson kicked his third conversion to take the Scots to within one point of Wales.

However, there was not enough time left for another score, but Scotland will go into Tuesday's game against Ireland with confidence.

Scotland U18 starting XV: 15. Stafford McDowall, 14. Rory McMichael, 13. Fraser Dingwall, 12. Cameron Hutchison, 11. Ben Appleson, 10. Grant Hughes, 9. Charlie Gowling, 1. Ross Dunbar, 2. Paul Cairncross, 3. Euan McLaren, 4. Archie Erskine, 5. Jamie Hodgson, 6. Jack Bruce, 7. Callum Cruikshank 8. Dan Marek.

U18 International Series Fixtures 

Friday 25 March: St Helens, Swansea – Wales v Scotland (2.30pm)
Tuesday 29 March: Caerphilly Centre of Sporting Excellence, Ystrad Mynach – Ireland v Scotland (5.15pm) and Wales v Italy (7.30pm)
Saturday 2 April: Caerphilly Centre of Sporting Excellence, Ystrad Mynach – Italy v Ireland (11am), Scotland v England (1.30pm)