England Under-20s suffered an agonising last-gasp 37-36 defeat against in their final Group A match in the Six Nations Summer Series in Verona despite a brilliant display from Warriors fly-half Fin Smith.
Smith orchestrated England’s back division, featuring prominently in four of their tries including a long pass to set up right Iwan Stephens (Newcastle Falcons) midway through the second half and a pinpoint accurate crossfield kick for full-back George Hendy (Northampton Saints) ten minutes from time.
That try gave England the lead but they were unable to hold on to it as Ireland fly-half Sam Prendergast struck with a penalty two minutes from time.
Ireland’s win was their first in the tournament while England’s was their second in three matches.
The tournament now moves to the Stadio Monigo in Treviso for the play-offs on Tuesday July 12 where England will play hosts Italy in the third-place decider (kick-off 4pm BST).