- England Under 20 beat Italy by 59-points in Cape Town
- Just the beginning – Chris Walker
England Under 20 64 Italy Under 20 5
England Under 20 got their IRB Junior World Championship off to the perfect start with a nine-try 64-5 win against northern hemisphere rivals Italy, but captain Chris Walker says that there’s more to come.
Tries from Josh Bassett, two from Marland Yarde, Dan Robson, Luke Cowan-Dickie, Kyle Sinckler, Ryan Mills, Tom Heathcote and Sam Hill helped England to the win as fly half Henry Slade added 11 points with the boot and Heathcote eight.
Photo: Getty Images
It wasn’t all plain sailing for Head Coach Rob Hunter’s side, after Slade had put England 3-0 up, Italy enjoyed a spell of possession and their dominance was rewarded with an 11th minute try from wing Leonardo Sarto.
But 10 minutes later England regained the lead, good work from scrum half Robson teed up Bassett for a simple score.
Yarde showed good pace to get England’s second soon after and Robson helped himself to the third just before the break, capitalising on a loose Italy line out throw to make it 24-5.
Prop Cowan-Dickie made it 29-5 five minutes into the second half, with Slade again adding the extras. England made use of their bench and the fresh legs made an immediate impact as replacements Sinckler and Mills scored in quick succession.
Heathcote then showed a good turn of pace to run in a 60-yard try, his first for England Under 20, before Hill went over in the corner and Yarde completed the scoring, collecting a Ransom pass.
Photo: Getty Images
Walker said: “We’re really happy with the win, but this is just the beginning. There’s more to come from us and despite the scoreline Italy really pushed us – particularly early on.
“We’ll take a look at this game and then move on to Ireland, there’s a quick turnaround between matches so we need to recover well and then focus on the next job. It really is one step at a time and today we climbed up the first step.”
Points: Bassett 1T, Yarde 2T; Robson 1T; Cowan-Dickie 1T; Sinckler 1T; Mills 1T; Heathcote 1T, 4C; Hill 1T, Slade 1P, 4C.
England Under 20 starting XV against Italy
15 Charlie Walker (Harlequins)
14 Marland Yarde (London Irish)
13 Sam Hill (Exeter Chiefs)
12 Tom Heathcote (Bath Rugby)
11 Josh Bassett (Bedford Blues)
10 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs)
9 Dan Robson (Gloucester Rugby)
1 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs)
2 Nathan Morris (London Wasps)
3 Ross Harrison (Sale Sharks)
4 Sam Twomey (Harlequins)
5 Dominic Barrow (Leeds Carnegie)
6 David Sisi (London Irish)
7 Chris Walker (Leeds Carnegie) (C)
8 Billy Vunipola (London Wasps)
16 Max Crumpton (Saracens) on for Nathan Morris 61 mins
17 Alec Hepburn (London Wasps) on for Luke Cowan-Dickie 53 mins
18 Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins) on for Ross Harrison 53 mins
19 George Merrick (Harlequins) on for Dom Barrow 53 mins
20 Jack Clifford (Harlequins) on for David Sisi 61 mins
21 Ben Spencer (Saracens) on for Dan Robson 56 mins
22 Ryan Mills (Gloucester Rugby) on for Henry Slade 56 mins
23 Ben Ransom (Saracens) on for Charlie Walker 61 mins