U20 World Championship – Junior Boks On The Wrong Side Of History After Loss To England

 

The Junior Springboks failed to qualify for the U20 World Championship semi-final for the first time since 2011, and only the second time since 2008, following their 17-12 loss to England.

The Junior Boks started like a house on fire, dominating early on, until captain Zachary Porthen bulldozed his way over the tryline to lead 07-00 after only six minutes of play.

Thereafter there was a definite swing in the momentum of the match with England's big forwards dominating the collision. England's eightman Nathan Michelow eventually bulldozed his way over the Junior Boks tryline to level the scores at 07-07 and fourteen minutes still to play in the second half.

England continued their dominance and it was the brilliant defence by the hosts that kept England from scoring any points during the final stages of the first half.

Despite playing with a strong wind in their backs the Junior Boks could not use this to their advantage by their halfbacks and will regret this during the latter parts of the second half.

England continued their physical dominance and lock Joe Bailey scored off the back of a five-meter lineout mall to extend England's lead to 12-07.

The English defence fumbled several times on the defence and Likhona Finca controlled a bouncing ball to score the Junior Boks' second try and level the score 12-12 with thirty minutes of play left in the second half.

The final thirty minutes was an arm wrestle between two willing teams in horrible conditions with no score added to the scoreboard. With time already up England's hooker, James Isaacs scored off the back of a five-meter lineout maul to secure a 17-12 win. 

Scorers:
Junior Springboks: Tries: Zachary Porthen, Likhona Finca. Conversion: Liam Koen.
England: Tries: Nathan Michelow, Joe Bailey, James Isaacs. Conversion: Sean Kerr.

Teams
Junior Springboks: 15 Michail Damon, 14 Likhona Finca, 13 Jurenzo Julius , 12 Joshua Boulle, 11 Litelihle Bester, 10 Liam Koen, 9 Asad Moos, 8 Thabang Mphafi, 7 Bathobele Hlekani, 6 Sibabalwe Mahashe, 5 JF van Heerden, 4 Thomas Dyer, 3 Zachary Porthen (c), 2 Luca Bakkes, 1 Casper Badenhorst. Replacements: 16 Ethan Bester, 17 Liyema Ntshanga, 18 Herman Lubbe, 19 Jaco Grobbelaar, 20 Tiaan Jacobs, 21 Divan Fuller, 22 Tylor Sefoor, 23 Phillip-Albert van Niekerk .

England: 15 Ben Redshaw, 14 Jack Bracken, 13 Ben Waghorn, 12 Sean Kerr, 11 Alex Wills, 10 Benjamin Coen, 9 Ollie Allan, 8 Nathan Michelow, 7 Henry Pollock, 6 Finn Carnduff (c), 5 Junior Kpoku, 4 Joe Bailey, 3 Billy Sela, 2 Craig Wright, 1 Asher Opoku-Fordjour. Replacements: 16 James Isaacs, 17 James Halliwell, 18 Afolabi Fasogbon, 19 Olamide Sodeke, 20 Kane James, 21 Lucas Friday, 22 Angus Hall, 23 Ioan Jones.