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Thursday Jun 23, 2016

England Rugby in a good place as U20s defeat South Africa in Championship Semi-Final

There’s no escaping the grey skies wherever you are in the world; whether that’s Australia, South Africa or Manchester. What you will find though, are winning England sides.

After Eddie Jones’s men sealed the historic series win in Australia and the Saxons won their series 2-0 vs South Africa ‘A’, England U20s put South Africa away by 39 points to 17 to reach a fourth consecutive championship final.

It was a high scoring first half for England with two tries after just six minutes of play courtesy of scrum-half Max Green and lock Huw Taylor. Two more were scored before the half, with Sam Aspland Robinson going over on the wing, and Max Malins securing one more in the last play.

Not until 47 minutes did the Baby Boks cross the line; Edwill van der Merwe finally ending the dry spell. England possibly becoming complacent, fullback Curwin Bosch scored and converted just a few minutes after.

Despite an enthused start to the second half, the boot which had served Harry Mallinder so well throughout the game and a late try from replacement Max Wright after just three minutes on the pitch kept South Africa well at bay. 

The game wasn’t without it’s controversies. SA captain Jeremy Ward took out Max Malins in the air which referee Paul Williams saw as punishable by yellow card and 10 in the bin. The incident can be seen in the highlights video below at around the 1:20 mark.

Although the end result was particularly nasty, it seems that Ward had no bad intentions and the last minute jump into the air by Malins was unexpected.

England U20’s will face Ireland U20’s in the Final on Saturday evening.

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