Jump to main content


PWC logo

Leinster And Ulster Under-20s Claim Home Wins

Leinster And Ulster Under-20s Claim Home Wins

Ulster and Leinster are the early front runners in the IRFU Under-20 Interprovincial Championship having recorded bonus point victories over Connacht and Munster respectively in Friday’s opening round.


ROUND 1 – Friday, September 5

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

ULSTER UNDER-20s 27 CONNACHT UNDER-20s 7, Kingspan Stadium

Scorers: Ulster: Tries: Connor Young, Adam Liddell, Jack Owens, Lorcan Dow; Cons: Sean O’Hagan 2; Pen: Sean O’Hagan
Connacht: Try: Stephen McVeigh; Con: Aidan Moynihan


Scorers: Leinster: David O’Connor, Nick Timoney, Adam Leavy, Andrew Porter; Cons: Joseph Carbery 3; Pens: Joseph Carbery 2
Munster: Tries: Liam O’Connor 2, Frank Bradshaw-Ryan; Con: Gearoid Lyons; Pen: Tomas Quinlan

The Ulster Under-20s got their Interprovincial campaign off to the perfect start with a 27-7 bonus point win over Connacht at Kingspan Stadium on Friday night.

A strong second half performance yielded 24 points as tries from Connor Young, Adam Liddell, Jack Owens and Lorcan Dow sealed an encouraging result for the home side.

Ulster, coached by Allen Clarke and Kieran Campbell, were dominant for much of the first half but failed to convert a number of scoring opportunities, including two penalty attempts from Sean O’Hagan.

However, the Ireland Under-19-capped out-half, who featured for the Ulster senior side against Exeter Chief in pre-season, opened the scoring with a 20th minute penalty.

Connacht, under consistent pressure, were forced to concede a number of penalties at the breakdown and the referee finally lost patience, showing Buccaneers lock Cian Romaine a yellow card five minutes before the break.

This provided Ulster with more impetus but after a number of excellent phases, O’Hagan’s pass to Liddell went to ground when the winger had the line at his mercy. The hosts took a 3-0 lead into the second half.

Young brought the game to life just minutes after the restart with a fine individual try. The Instonians scrum half broke from a ruck just outside the Connacht 22 and rounded full-back Anthony McGivney to dot down under the posts. O’Hagan converted for a 10-point buffer.

Connacht out-half Aidan Moynihan was then unsuccessful with two penalty attempts, the second of which rattled the left upright. The westerners claimed possession from the rebound and almost scored in the corner – but for an excellent man-and-ball tackle from Jacob Stockdale.

Jimmy Duffy’s charges continued to attack and number 8 Stephen McVeigh powered his way over from a five-metre scrum. Moynihan added the extras to reduce the deficit to 10-7.

The hosts responded in emphatic fashion with a superb try moments later. The forwards set the platform with a strong scrum in midfield before O’Hagan’s perfectly timed pass put Liddell in space. The Malone man finished superbly and O’Hagan converted for a 17-7 scoreline.

By this stage the Ulster backs had found their rhythm and just 60 seconds later full-back Owens scored his team’s third try from a excellent counter attacking run. O’Hagan’s conversion drifted wide.

The Ulster youngsters continued to apply pressure and were rewarded when number 8 Dow touched down in the dying seconds from the base of a dominant scrum. That unconverted try sealed the bonus point right on the full-time whistle.

Ulster will look to make it two wins out of two when they host Leinster at Kingspan Stadium next Saturday (kick-off 4pm). Match tickets can be purchased here.

ULSTER U-20: Jack Owens (Queen’s University); Adam Liddell (Malone), Sam Arnold (Ballynahinch), Conor McKee (Queen’s University), Jacob Stockdale (tbc); Sean O’Hagan (Queen’s University), Connor Young (Instonians); Michael Lagan (Ballymena) (capt), Zack McCall (Queen’s University), Dane Fitzpatrick (Ballynahinch), Tom Donnan (tbc), Nigel Simpson (Queen’s University), Callum Irvine (tbc), Caleb Montgomery (tbc), Lorcan Dow (Queen’s University).

Replacements: Andrew McGrath (tbc), Darryl Morton (Armagh), Angelo Marica (Belfast Harlequins), Josh Davidson (tbc), Ross Todd (tbc), Josh Fullerton (Belfast Harlequins), Jack Milligan (Dungannon), Michael Cartmill (Malone).

CONNACHT U-20: Anthony McGivney (NUIG); Joseph D’Arcy (Galwegians), Dwayne Corcoran (Westport), Ben Ridgeway (Galwegians), Oisin Leahy (NUIG); Aidan Moynihan (Galwegians), Conor Lowndes (Galwegians); Conor Kyne (Galwegians), Rory Litchfield (Galwegians), Conan O’Donnell (Sligo), Cian Romaine (Buccaneers), James Doyle (Galwegians) (capt), Alex Penny (NUIG), Joshua Pim (Buccaneers), Stephen McVeigh (Buccaneers).

Replacements: Pat O’Toole (Corinthians), Conor Doyle (Buccaneers), Craig Hansberry (Corinthians), Roy Stanley (NUIG), Marc Kelly (Corinthians), Ricky Dixon (Buccaneers), Andrew Shanahan (NUIG), Dylan Kelso (Buccaneers).

The Leinster Under-20s were as good as advertised in a high tempo, high quality 32-20 victory over Munster on the opening evening of the U-20 Interprovincial Championship at Ashbourne RFC.

The relaying of a new surface at Donnybrook has forced the Leinster age-grade teams to look for alternative venues for the Interpros and there are few more intimate than the County Meath club.

On a balmy night and a fast track, Munster were first to threaten, winger Greg O’Shea and Paul Kiernan combining on a raid down the right before Leinster centre Conor O’Brien’s offload almost released Harrison Brewer down the other end.

Soon, Munster scrum half Jack Cullen latched onto a grubber for what looked like a try only for Jack Power to whip away his legs in the tackle. The full-back did not release, and the resulting Munster penalty from out-half Tomas Quinlan whacked against the upright.

Not long after, Brewer cut back for a gain of ground, but out-half Joseph Carbery’s side-door pass was seen as forward. They came again. Brewer made the gain-line. Left winger Robert Vallejo showed awareness to flip the ball inside for second row David O’Connor to eventually touchdown for 5-0 in the 11th minute.

Munster’s restart went sky high to allow their chasers to apply pressure. The mistake came and it was compounded by a scrum penalty which was nicely dispatched by Quinlan in the 15th minute.

The smash and grab tactics of Leinster’s hitting turned defence into attack for prop Andrew Porter to split the first line of resistance. Flanker Conor Oliver calmly drew in the last defender to send number 8 Nick Timoney in at the left corner. Carbery made the touchline conversion look like a formality for 12-3.

The confidence started to flow for Wayne Mitchell’s home side. Second row Jack Dwan scythed through the middle and intelligently delayed his pass for the onrushing traffic. Adam Leavy’s sleight of foot almost worked down the right.

Then, Oliver had to be vigilant to haul down Gearoid Lyons. Scrum half Cullen seized on Leinster’s disorganisation to eat up the ground, creating an overlap which O’Shea put on the floor.

Increasingly, the game was being played on Leinster’s terms. Munster tended to look for territory, while the Blues looked for space on the counter attack, none more than Power (pictured below), whose movement onto an inside ball was the key to Leavy’s swift try-scoring finish in the 31st minute. Carbery converted from the left touchline.

Referee Stuart Gaffikin decided that prop Porter’s illegality at scrum time was deserving of a yellow card. He followed Power into the bin. The temporary reduction to 14 men was set aside as Carbery lashed over a penalty from distance in added time.

Munster front rowers Mick O’Donnell and Sean McNulty powered onwards for real front foot ball that full-back Stephen Fitzgerald almost turned into a try only to be called back for a forward pass to leave it 22-3 at the interval.

The Peter Malone-coached visitors started with a renewed sense of purpose, Fitzgerald posing a danger on the ball and Cullen moving it quickly away from the base. They could not turn it into points though.

Leinster’s precision was too much to handle. Vallejo came in off his wing to spin the ball wide for Power to set up the recycle. A revived Porter hammered onto a flat pass for the fourth try in the 48th minute, converted by Carbery.

Munster were able to create openings without the accuracy to make profit out of them, despite the impact of flanker Luke O’Leary, centre Kiernan and Fitzgerald. Within the space of a minute, they were held up over the line and knocked on over it.

Eventually, they got their reward as lock Frank Bradshaw-Ryan steamed to the line off the back of a lineout for centre Lyons to kick the extras for 29-10 in the 63rd minute.

They just could not consolidate straight away. Leinster forced a penalty from the restart and Carbery knocked over another three-pointer before Munster’s persistence paid off again through replacement prop Liam O’Connor.

Leinster had their chances to respond. Replacement Greg Jones almost put Porter in for his second. But, it was Munster’s solid work close-in that worked to the benefit of O’Connor for his second try to narrow the margin to 12 points in the 79th minute.

LEINSTER U-20: Jack Power (UCD); Adam Leavy (St. Michael’s College), Conor O’Brien (Mullingar), Harrison Brewer (Terenure College), Robert Vallejo (New Ross); Joseph Carbery (UCD), Charlie Rock (Old Belvedere) (capt); Andrew Porter (St. Andrew’s College), Jack McKenna (Lansdowne), Jeremy Loughman (Blackrock College), David O’Connor (Blackrock College), Jack Dwan (Blackrock College), Josh Murphy (UCD), Conor Oliver (St. Mary’s College), Nick Timoney (St. Mary’s College).

Replacements used: Fergal Cleary (Clongowes Wood) for Brewer (12 mins), Eric O’Sullivan (Templeogue College) for Murphy (39, temp sub), Greg Jones (St. Andrew’s College) for Dwan (46), Sean Kearns (Blackrock College) for Power (50), Andrew Roche (Terenure College) for McKenna (61), Samuel Pim (Kilkenny College) for Oliver (62), Ntinga Mpiko (Lansdowne) for Loughman (69). Not used: Tim Schmidt (Terenure College).

MUNSTER U-20: Stephen Fitzgerald (Shannon) (capt); Greg O’Shea (Shannon), Paul Kiernan (UCC), Gearoid Lyons (Young Munster); Stephen McMahon (Garryowen); Tomas Quinlan (Cork Constitution), Jack Cullen (Shannon); Brendan Quinlan (Cork Constitution), Sean McNulty (UCD), Mick O’Donnell (Crescent College Comprehensive), Frank Bradshaw-Ryan (Shannon), Glen Stokes (Cork Constitution), Johnny Keane (Garryowen), Luke O’Leary (Cork Constitution), David St. Leger (PBC Cork).

Replacements used: Will Leonard (Shannon) for T Quinlan (28 mins), Greg Roche (Cork Constitution) for O’Donnell (39), Liam O’Connor (CBC Cork) for B Quinlan (48), Conor Barry (UCC/Bandon) for O’Leary (62), Cormac Blake (Crescent College Comprehensive) for St. Leger (65), Luke O’Halloran (St. Munchin’s College) for McNulty (72). Not used: Jason Higgins (CBC Cork), Ed O’Keeffe (Young Munster).


Friday, September 12 –

MUNSTER U-20s v CONNACHT U-20s, Thomond Park, 7pm

Saturday, September 13 –

ULSTER U-20s v LEINSTER U-20s, Kingspan Stadium, 4pm

Friday, September 19 –

MUNSTER U-20s v ULSTER U-20s, Dooradoyle, 7pm

Saturday, September 20 –

CONNACHT U-20s v LEINSTER U-20s, the Sportsground, 4pm