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Under-20s To Open JWC Against Argentina

Under-20s To Open JWC Against Argentina

The match schedule for the 2009 IRB Junior World Championship, which is being hosted by Japan this summer, has been announced. Allen Clarke’s Ireland Under-20 team will open their campaign against Argentina in Nagoya on Friday, June 5.


POOL A – New Zealand, Argentina, Ireland, Uruguay

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Friday, June 5: Ireland v Argentina, Mizuho Sports Park, Nagoya, 5pm local time/8am Irish time

Tuesday, June 9: Ireland v New Zealand, Mizuho Sports Park, Nagoya, 7pm local time/10am Irish time

Saturday, June 13: Ireland v Uruguay, Mizuho Sports Park, Nagoya, 1pm local time/4am Irish time

* The knock-out stages will be played out over Wednesday, June 17 and Sunday, June 21, with matches in Nagoya, Osaka, Fukuoka and Tokyo

The International Rugby Board has announced the match schedule for the 2009 IRB Junior World Championship 2009 in Japan.

The tournament, which will bring together the world’s best Under-20 teams, will take place from June 5 to 21 and will incorporate a regional format.

Nagoya (Aichi), Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka (Saga) will be the host cities for each of the four tournament pools ensuring widespread coverage within Japan.

The four cities will also host two knock-out rounds (including the semi-finals and final in Tokyo).

Reigning champions and number one seeds New Zealand top Pool A in Nagoya and will kick off their 2009 campaign against promoted Uruguay, the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy 2008 winners.

The other match in this pool on the opening day will see eighth-ranked Argentina take on Ireland, the ninth seeds, at the same venue.

Tokyo is the base for Pool B and hosts Japan will face number two seeds England in their opening match, while Samoa and Scotland will meet in the other match at the venue in round one.

South Africa begin their quest against Fiji in the big Pool C round one match in Osaka, while France meet Italy in the other pool opener.

Wales, the top seeds in Pool D, face Tonga in Fukuoka just after the meeting of Australia and Canada.

IRB Tournaments Manager Philippe Bourdarias said: “With matches being played across five world-class venues in Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and Fukuoka, the 2009 IRB Junior World Championship has the ability to engage the rugby community on a wider scale than ever before.

“The Japan Rugby Football Union is committed to growing the game in the country and an extensive dedicated legacy programme will be activated to maximise the impact of the Championship.”

New Zealand and Argentina were also Ireland’s pool opponents at last season’s inaugural Junior World Championship in Wales

Then coached by Eric Elwood, the Irish U-20s lost to New Zealand (65-10) and Argentina (17-9) last June.

Elwood’s charges bounced back to finish ninth overall, thanks to wins over Tonga (45-27), Italy (9-6) and Scotland (39-12).

To view the full 2009 JWC match schedule, please click here.