Youngsters help England Under 16s to victory

Four Warriors youngsters were involved in the England Under 16s side that defeated Wales Under 16s on Saturday.

Josh Nott (RGS Worcester) and Joseph Morris (King Edward VI Aston) both started for the Under 16s whilst Zac Xiourouppa (Ellesmere College) and Kalius Hutchinson (Coundon Court) were amongst the replacements.

Three tries were just enough to see England to a 24-22 victory, despite a late try from Wales’ Harri Randall.

Wales started with the same 15 who had faced France at Wellington the previous Saturday, while England made two changes to the side that started against Scotland with Henry Walker coming in at hooker and Nott at scrum-half.

England were quick to get on the scoreboard, with fly-half Alex Crossdale kicking a penalty after Wales had been penalised at a scrum in front of the posts, but his opposite number Phil Jones equalised for Wales within a few minutes.

The Wales lineout was strong throughout, and with possession secured, right wing Keelan Giles cut through to score in the corner.

Wales scored again when left wing Patrick Lewis dived in close to the posts, with Jones converting to give his side a 15-3 lead.

England second-row Nick Isiewicke then took a quick penalty and plunged over to score before Crossdale converted to close the gap to five points.

Crossdale then converted his own try as England reached the interval with a slightly improbable lead at 17-15.

Gabriel Ibitoye then broke tackles and just about stayed in play to score out wide and Crossdale was again on target with the conversion as Wales faced a nine-point deficit.

When England were penalised for offside, a kick to the right corner gave Wales a chance to take advantage of their lineout. From the ensuing maul, Randall dived over in the corner.

Replacement fly-half Declan Williams faced probably the most difficult kick of the day, but duly bisected the posts to put Wales within two.

The momentum was with Wales as England defended desperately but a Williams penalty drifted wide and England held on for the win.