IRB Junior World Championship
New Zealand defeat Australia
June 9, 2013
Joe Edwards celebrates his try against Australia in Vannes
© Getty Images
New Zealand Under-20s defeated Australia 14-10 in their latest IRB Junior World Championship at Stade de la Rabine in Vannes on Sunday.
Blindside flanker Joseph Edwards scored New Zealand's only try of a typically close trans-Tasman encounter, with five-eighth Simon Hickey adding three penalties to give the team a 14-3 lead at half-time. Australia's replacement centre Luke Burton scored a try in the 59th minute, converted by Reece Hodge, to close the gap to 14-10, but New Zealand held on through an arm wrestle as Australia hit them hard around fringes in the final 20 minutes.
New Zealand centre Jason Emery showed he was much improved for his time with the Highlanders in Super Rugby, but Hurricanes flanker Ardie Savea stole the show as he pulled off a number of crucial defensive plays in what was an intense finishing quarter. Referee Dudley Phillips awarded a number of penalties to Australia, who marched into New Zealand's 20-metre zone as the match went into time added on, but the Australian forwards were unable to maintain their last-gasp effort and Savea strangled the ball carrier after the official deemed a maul had been formed, effectively ending the match.
Ireland meanwhile defeated Fiji 46-3, scoring six tries including braces from Darren Sweetnam and Rory Scholes. They had a poor day with the boot, however, with four missed conversions and two missed penalties.
The Baby Blacks, who top pool B on points differential after opening their campaign with a 59-6 thrashing of Fiji, play Ireland at Stade de la Rabine in their third-round Pool B match on Thursday. Australia, who lost their opening game against Ireland, 19-15, and who cannot now make the knockout stages after losing to New Zealand, play Fiji.
© ESPN Australia / New Zealand with Sportal