Ireland came from behind to beat Wales 26-25 in their U20 Championship opener
Tries from Shaun Evans, Keelan Giles and Reuben Morgan-Williams gave the Welsh a narrow 17-15 lead at the break
Jacob Stockdale and Adam McBurney both touched down to keep the Irish in the clash
Fullback Stockdale grabbed a second after the break before Gile’s late try set up a grandstand finish
Ireland bounced back from being 0-17 down as they held off Wales 26-25 in a gripping clash at Manchester City Academy Stadium on Tuesday.
Wales enjoyed an excellent start to the game as openside flanker Shaun Evans, wing Kellan Giles and scrum-half Reuben Morgan-Williams went over the whitewash to hand them a 0-17 lead with just 20 minutes played.
Fortunately for Ireland a Bill Johnston drop-goal, hooker Adam McBurney’s try and full-back Jacob Stockdale’s crossing in the last play of the opening period made it a 15-17 ball game at the interval in Manchester.
Crucially Wales struck first after the break with a Daniel Jones penalty but Ireland responded through the boot of Johnston for 18-20.
But then Ireland took the upper hand with another Johnston penalty on 51 minutes preceding a Stockdale try as they took a 26-20 lead.
Wales came close to winning when Giles claimed his brace wide out but Jarrod Evans was wide with the tough effort as Ireland held on.
Wales: 15 Rhun Williams, 14 Tom Williams, 13 Joe Thomas, 12 Harri Millard, 11 Keelan Giles, 10 Daniel Jones, 9 Reuben Morgan-Williams, 8 Harrison Keddie, 7 Shaun Evans, 6 Tom Phillips (c), 5 Adam Beard, 4 Shane Lewis-Hughes, 3 Dillon Lewis, 2 Dafydd Hughes, 1 Corey Domachowski
Replacements: 16 Liam Belcher, 17 Rhys Fawcett, 18 Leon Brown, 19 Seb Davies, 20 Josh Macleod, 21 Declan Smith, 22 Jarrod Evans, 23 Billy McBryde
Ireland: 15 Jacob Stockdale, 14 Matthew Byrne, 13 Shane Daly, 12 Conor O’Brien, 11 Hugo Keenan, 10 Bill Johnston, 9 Stephen Kerins, 8 Max Deegan, 7 David Aspil, 6 Greg Jones, 5 James Ryan (c), 4 Cillian Gallagher, 3 Conor Kenny, 2 Adam McBurney, 1 Andrew Porter
Replacements: 16 Vincent O’Brien, 17 Vakh Abdaladze, 18 Ben Betts, 19 Sean O’Connor, 20 Kelvin Brown, 21 John Poland, 22 Johnny McPhillips, 23 Jimmy O’Brien
Referee: Paul Williams (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa), Phil Watters (England)
TMO: Trevor Fisher (England)