Warriors star as France demolished

Warriors trio Matt Cox, Miles Benjamin and Greg King all produced impressive displays as England U19 completed their preparations for the IRB Under-19 World Championship by crushing France 29-5 at Henley.

Flanker Cox started the game and Benjamin and King both made second half appearances as England cruised to victory.
England’s preparations have been fragmented this season with limited preparation time as they get ready for a tough series of pool games against Samoa, Argentina and New Zealand in Belfast next month.
But it had little impact on the composed and inventive performance they produced at Dry Leas.
The result was a hugely impressive one – particularly against France, who England could only draw 12-12 with in last year’s third-place play-off in Dubai which they won on the try-count.
Earlier in the afternoon, Warriors lock Graham Kitchener started as a spirited second-half comeback by England handed the Under 18s Six Nations Festival squad their first international win of the season over France.
England, who will contest the Six Nations Festival in Glasgow next month, were left trailing at the break but came good in the second half to secure a 14-8 victory in the dying minutes.
England U18s head coach Gary Kibble said: “I’m very happy with this win, especially considering this is our first international of the season. It is great knowing that we will now go to Glasgow with a win under our belts. That will lift our spirits tremendously.
Meanwhile, England completed their preparations for this season’s AER European Under-18 Championships by drawing 5-5 with Scotland in a development match at Percy Park RFC in North Shields.
The game was England’s third and final warm-up match before they take on Portugal in their AER opener in Biarritz on Sunday, April 1. England will be attempting to win the competition for a third consecutive season.
No caps were awarded for the Scotland game which was played in 20 minute quarters to give England’s coaching staff the opportunity to assess the full squad ahead of their flight to Biarritz on Thursday.
England called up Warriors scrum-half Oliver Frost – to join fellow Sixways starlets Harry Owens, Joel Diggin and Michael Penn – because of injuries and the inclusion of Joe Burford in the England Under-18 Six Nations Championship squad.
And Frost, who impressed for the Midlands in the Divisional Festival in December, acquitted himself well in a game in which the main feature was two well-organised defences.
“It was another good work out and we were pleased with the way things went,” said Ted Atkinson, England’s team manager.
“We were reduced in numbers because of injuries and illness but the players that stepped in gave a very good account of themselves.”