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Ireland set for England rematch as U20 World Championship reaches playoff stage

Noel McNamara’s side contest their fifth-place playoff semi-final on Monday.

IRELAND WILL RENEW their recent rivalry with England when the sides contest the fifth-place playoff semi-final at the U20 World Championship on Monday.

Noel McNamara’s side concluded their pool campaign with a bonus-point win over Italy yesterday, but the round two defeat to Australia proved costly in their bid to reach the semi-final stage.

Josh Hodnett in a scrum Ireland and England will renew battle lines this Monday. Source: Pablo Gasparini/INPHO

With hosts Argentina, Australia and South Africa progressing through as the three pool winners, France clinched the best runners-up spot on 11 points ahead of New Zealand [10] and Ireland [10].

It means Ireland, who defeated England in their opening pool game last Saturday, will face the Red Rose again, this time in Rosario on Monday evening [KO 7.30pm Irish time, eir Sport].

The sides will meet for the third time this season, with Ireland winning both the previous encounters, in this competition and the opening game of their Grand Slam-winning campaign back in February.

The other fifth-place playoff semi-final sees New Zealand go head-to-head with Wales.

In the competition semi-finals, Argentina will face the Junior Wallabies while the second last-four tie will be contested between South Africa and France.

With Ireland losing four more players to injury yesterday — Ciaran Booth, Angus Kernohan, David McCann and Thomas Ahern — an update from the squad is expected later.

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Ryan Bailey

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