Junior Wallabies make sweeping changes for Ireland clash

Tue, Jun 27, 2023, 7:56 AM
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Teddy Wilson returns to skipper the Junior Wallabies against Ireland. Photo: Getty Images
Teddy Wilson returns to skipper the Junior Wallabies against Ireland. Photo: Getty Images

Junior Wallabies coach Nathan Grey has revamped his line-up for Thursday's second pool match against Ireland at the U20 World Championships.

Grey has made 10 changes to the starting side that overcame a spirited Fiji side on Sunday (AEST time), with Jhy Legg, Lachlan Hooper, Darby Lancaster, David Vaihu and Mason Gordon the players remaining.

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Teddy Wilson re-takes the captaincy, partnering Easts and Waratahs teammate Jack Bowen in the halves.

Player-of-the-match Vaihu is joined by Henry O'Donnell in the centres as Tim Ryan comes onto the wing.

Waratahs prop Jack Barrett comes into the front row, with Force young gun Marley Pearce copping a red card for his high shot during the win.

He is joined by Daniel Maiava-Tapusoa, who was a late withdrawal, and vice-captain Ned Slack-Smith in the forward pack.

After a promising start to the tournament with a bonus point win over a strong Fiji side, the next opportunity to represent the jersey has arrived for 23 Junior Wallabies," Grey said in a statement.

"For some of them it will be their first opportunity in the tournament but as a team we will continue to build on our performances to date."

The Junior Wallabies sit top of Pool B, with Ireland coming off a 34-all draw against England in their opening match.

The Irish are the benchmark at the U20 level, winning back-to-back Six Nations as they went through the tournament undefeated.

"Ireland has been the benchmark in the Under-20 Six Nations for the last two years and their draw against England last weekend was a high quality match," Grey added.

"We're excited to test ourselves against a Northern Hemisphere team for the first time in four years and keen to deliver a performance that showcases both our attacking style and our commitment in defence."

Junior Wallabies vs. Ireland U20, Paarl Gymnasium, Paarl, 11am SAST (7pm AEST) Thursday

1. Jack Barrett (NSW Waratahs, Randwick)

2. Max Craig (QLD Reds, Easts Tigers)

3. Massimo De Lutiis (ACT Brumbies, Western District Lions)

4. Jhy Legg (Western Force, Wests Scarborough)

5. Daniel Maiava-Tapusoa (Melbourne Rebels, Wests Bulldogs)

6. Lachlan Hooper (ACT Brumbies, Vikings Rugby)

7. Ned Slack-Smith (Western Force, Palmyra Rugby Union Club)

8. John Bryant (QLD Reds, Souths Magpies)

9. Teddy Wilson (c) (NSW Waratahs, Eastern Suburbs)

10. Jack Bowen (NSW Waratahs, Eastern Suburbs)

11. Darby Lancaster (Melbourne Rebels, Eastern Suburbs)

12. David Vaihu (Melbourne Rebels, Wests Bulldogs)

13. Henry O'Donnell (NSW Waratahs, Northern Suburbs)

14. Tim Ryan (QLD Reds, Brothers Rugby Club)

15. Mason Gordon (Melbourne Rebels, Wests Bulldogs)


16. Liam Bowron (ACT Brumbies, Canberra Royals)

17. Harrison Usher (QLD Reds, Bond University)

18. Nick Bloomfield (QLD Reds, Easts Tigers)

19. Toby Macpherson (ACT Brumbies, Uni-Norths Owls)

20. Leafi Heka Talataina (Melbourne Rebels, Endeavour Hills)

21. Klayton Thorn (ACT Brumbies, Gungahlin Eagles)

22. Harry McLaughlin-Phillips (QLD Reds, Souths Magpies)

23. Taj Annan (QLD Reds, Souths Magpies)

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