The teams have been announced for Friday evenings Six Nations match between Ireland U20 and England U20. Kick off 18:00.
Unfortunately, due to injuries we are now down to one Ulster player, ever present Jonny Stewart the only Ulster talent on show. While I generally enjoy the teams that Nigel Carolan puts out I have to say that the loss of Johnny McPhillips, Peter Cooper, Marcus Rea and Rob Lyttle, coupled with the defeat by Wales last week, has somewhat taken the shine of this fixture for me.
Carolan has made three changes from the team that lost to Wales, with Gavin Mullin coming in at outside center and John Foley coming in at blindside to bump Gavin Coombes to the bench at the expense of Rea.
The usually reserved Carolin has been talking this team up this week with the surprise assertion that this is a better squad than last year. They have certainly shown a lot of resilience to get this far with only one loss, but, in truth, I’ve yet to see them play at the level that last years lads did. They played a delightful brand of rugby even when they lost.
Friday night would certainly be the night to prove me wrong but they are going to need to up their game considerably if they are to cause England problems. The English have progressed rather sedately through the first four matches, getting a try bonus point in each one, to wrap up the Championship a week early, unassailable on 20 points.
The FRU Predicts: Try as I might I just can’t see where Ireland U20 are going to win this one. Could be a record making five bonus point wins out of five for the English!
|IRELAND U20||ENGLAND U20|
|Jordan Larmour||15||Tom Parton|
|Tommy O’Brien||14||Joe Cokanasiga|
|Gavin Mullin||13||Dominic Morris|
|Ciaran Frawley||12||Will Butler|
|Calvin Nash||11||Sam Aspland-Robinson|
|Bill Johnston||10||Max Malins|
|Jonny Stewart||9||Harry Randall|
|Joey Conway||1||Ollie Dawe|
|Tadgh McElroy||2||Henry Walker|
|Charlie Connolly||3||Ciaran Knight|
|Fineen Wycherley||4||Jack Nay|
|Oisin Dowling||5||Nick Isiekwe|
|John Foley||6||Tom Curry|
|Paul Boyle||7||Ben Curry|
|Caelan Doris||8||Zach Mercer|
|Ronan Kelleher||16||Jamie Blamire|
|Greg McGrath||17||Ralph Adams-Hale|
|Matthew Burke||18||Joseph Morris|
|Jack Regan||19||Justin Clegg|
|Gavin Coombes||20||Josh Bayliss|
|Jack Stafford||21||Alex Mitchell|
|Conor Fitzgerald||22||Theo Brophy Clews|
|Colm Hogan||23||Max Wright|