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O'Donoghue double helps Ireland Under 20s wash away Scotland

Mike Ruddock’s side kicked off the Six Nations with a convincing home win.

Jack O'Donoghue opens the scoring.
Jack O'Donoghue opens the scoring.
Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

Ireland 34

Scotland 7

IRELAND UNDER 20s got their Six Nations off to a flying start with a four-try victory over Scotland in Dubarry Park.

Mike Ruddock may well come away grumbling after letting a clean sheet slip on the final play of the game.

However, it was a game settled long before the end by Ireland’s pack; dominant from the early stages and consistently punching holes in the visiting defence in tight exchanges.

From two such openings, Munster number eight Jack O’Donoghue capitalised with a try, the first of which came after 33 minutes.

Ross Byrne had already kicked the hosts into a 6 – 0 lead – the first of which was a superb long-range effort to get Ireland off the mark after 12 minutes - when he showed his soft hands off the back of a solid scrum in Scotland’s 22 to get Ireland over the gain-line before O’Donoghue stretched for the whitewash.

On the stroke of half time, Peadar Timmins profited from more forward dominance, wriggling over the line from another flat pass from Byrne.

The TMO decision allowed Byrne the UCD out-half make make the score 20 – 0 at the break with his fourth successful kick at goal from five attempts on an atrocious night in Athlone.

With a commanding lead and deteriorating conditions under foot, some of Ireland’s intensity naturally diminished, but it wasn’t long before another solid scrum presented another opportunity for O’Donoghue.

The number eight wisely resisted the urge to put everything in his first drive for the line, but in twisting to manufacture the score before being grounded the Waterford man appeared to twist his knee and was forced off with the score 27 – 0.

The introduction of Oisin Heffernan off the bench gave Ireland an extra boost and his powerful carrying yielded try with Byrne adding the extras.

Replacement scrum-half Ben Vellacott would ground a late consolation score, recognising a mis-match around a late ruck before chipping the ball at the try-line and winning the chase to deny Ireland clean sheet, but little else.

Scorers:

Ireland

Tries: Jack O’Donoghue (2), Peadar Timmins, Oisin Heffernan.

Conv: Ross Byrne (4)

Penalties: Ross Byrne (2)

Scotland

Try: Ben Vellacott

Conv: Ben Cooper.

Ireland: David Busby (QUB, Ulster), Adam Byrne, Gary Ringrose (both UCD, Leinster), Peter Robb (Old Belvedere, Leinster), Ian Fitzpatrick (Lansdowne, Leinster), Ross Byrne, Nick McCarthy (both UCD, Leinster):

Peter Dooley (Lansdowne, Leinster), Max Abbott, Rory Burke (both Cork Con, Munster), Sean O’Brien (Galwegians, Connacht), Ross Malony; Peadar Timmins, Dan leavy (all three UCD, Leinster), Jack O’Donoghue (UL, Munster).

Replacements: Shane Delahunt (Lansdowne, Leinster), Jacob Walshe (Buccaneers, Connacht), Oisin Heffernan (Lansdowne, Leinster), Joe Joyce (Bristol), Rory Maloney (Buccaneers, Connacht), Jack Cullen (Bruff, Munster), Conor McKeon (Lansdowne, Leinster), Dan Goggin (Young Munster, Munster).

Scotland: Gavin Lowe; Jamie Farndale, Damien Hoyland, Neil Herron, Sam Pecqeur; Ben Chalmers, Murdo McAndrew: James malsolm, Sam James, D’Arcy, Rae; Andrew Cramond, Glen Young; Magnus Bradbury, Tommy Spinks, Buchan Richardson.

Replacements: Ross Graham, Philip Cringle, Jack Cosgrove, Lewis Carmicheal, Neil Irvine-Hess, Ben Vellacott, Ben Cooper, Ruairidh Young.

O’Connell relishing intensity of forward battle on 6 Nations return

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About the author:

Sean Farrell

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