Ireland outplayed by England in World Cup semi-final

Nick Tompkins of England runs over Peter Dooley of Ireland
Nick Tompkins of England runs over Peter Dooley of Ireland


A blistering first-half display saw England blow first-time semi-finalists at U20 level, Ireland out of the water and keep their hopes of defending the IRB Junior World Championship title alive, the Irish simply unable to live with the English power, running lines and line speed on defence.

Harry Sloan scored the first of England’s four tries before the break, but it was Howard Packman’s try that was the pick of the bunch, fly half Billy Burns spotting the Ireland defence had all been sucked in and kicking across for the wing to take in his stride and race over the line.

Ireland lost captain Jack O’Donoghue just before the break to a head knock, but without him they battled bravely and while the win was by then beyond them, they battled bravely to the finish and were rewarded with tries from Garry Ringrose and Alex Wootton. England were not to be denied a fifth final appearance with flanker Gus Jones adding their final try.

England will now meet South Africa in the final after they defeated New Zealand in the other semi-final. Ireland play the baby All Blacks in the third and fourth place classification on Friday in Auckland.