Ireland U20s annihilated by Baby All Blacks

New Zealand run riot against a much changed Irish team

BY Rob Fanning 16:45 Thursday 8 June 2017, 16:45 8 Jun 2017

Ireland's Caelan Doris ©INPHO/Archil Gegenava

It was another very tough afternoon for Ireland U20s as they were beaten 69-3 by a superb New Zealand performance.

It has been a very disappointing campaign for Ireland who have lost all three games of this year's tournament. Head coach Peter Malone made 12 changes from the side that faced Scotland a few days ago. The Baby All Blacks have been in scintillating form so far scoring 15 tries in their opening two matches. They continued their ruthlessness this afternoon scoring an amazing 11 tries. Fullback Will Jordan and winger Caleb Clarke both scored hat-tricks in what was an extremely one-sided affair.

Ireland did have a few chances to score but the Maori defense stayed strong. For a seven-minute period in the second half, New Zealand had two of their men sin-binned. As much as Ireland pressed for a try it was to no avail.

The try of the match came on a play that started in New Zealand's half when their hooker Asafo Aumua virtually ran 50m, handing off defenders along the way. He then had the skill to offload the ball to scrum-half Eric Enari, who took his chance beautifully.

"Credit to New Zealand, it was a super performance," Irish coach Malone told eirSport. "We've to hold our hand up, we couldn't live with their pace their offloading game today. We thought we'd upset them with our line-speed but we didn't. "We're disappointed, we thought we might get a bit closer." On next week's match four, Malone was confident that the side would regroup. "It's a massive game for us, whoever we get," he added. "I think the guys are sharp enough to regroup themselves. We have worked hard but the results have been disappointing."

Ireland will play one more match next week against either Samoa or Georgia to ensure they do not get relegated into next year's World Rugby Under 20s Trophy, which is the second level of the World Rugby tournament structure for under-20 national sides. Ireland have never competed in this tournament.

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