Second-half Leinster blitz too much for Ireland U20s

Leinster Development XV 57 Ireland U20 XV 26: The Leinster Development XV produced a second-half blitz at Donnybrook yesterday to finish with 31 points to spare in a high scoring encounter with an Ireland U20 side.

This is the first of two games that the international selection will be playing during the festive period, and they broke the deadlock with a converted try from Young Munster’s Calvin Nash in the 16th-minute.

However, Leinster replied through the impressive number eight Caelan Doris, before his opposite number Gavin Coombes restored Ireland’s lead. Blues hooker Richie Halpin crossed over in the final minute of the first half to draw the match level at 12-12.

It was the provincial outfit who dominated second-half proceedings with tries coming from Thomas O’Callaghan, Tommy O’Brien and Mark O’Keefe while out-half Conor Dean kicked six points to hand Leinster a 21-point lead.

Ireland (who included seven Leinster players in their 23) eventually responded with a breakaway try from replacement Peadar Collins, but a brace by UCD’s Ronan Foley reinforced the Blues’ superiority.

Ireland reduced the deficit with a hard-earned score by prop Rory Mulvihill, before Leinster flanker Richard Dunne cancelled it out by dotting down in the 74th-minute. Foley completed the Leinster rout by claiming his hat-trick on the stroke of 80 minutes.

Scorers for Leinster Development:

R Foley 3 tries, C Doris, R Halpin, T O’Callaghan, T O’Brien, M O’Keefe, R Dunne try each, C Dean 6 cons.

Scorers for Ireland U20:

C Nash, G Coombes, P Collins, R Mulvihill try each, L Carty 2 cons, C Fitzgerald con.

Leinster Development:

J Power; M O’Keefe, C O’Brien, T O’Brien, T O’Callaghan; C Dean, N Peters; G McGrath, R Halpin, M Mulhall; C Daly, J Regan; R Dunne, T De Jongh, C Doris.

Replacements:

C Johnson, V Abdaladze, J Duggan, E Coyle, JJ O’Dea, D O’Connor, R Foley, D Sweeney, C Mulcahy, B O’Hora, M Silvester.

Ireland:

R Little; D Hurley, C Nash, R Butler, L Coombes; C Fitzgerald, J Stewart; J Conway, T McElroy, P Cooper; F Wycherley, C Gallagher; P Boyle, B Fitzpatrick, G Coombes.

Replacements:

S O’Hehir, R Mulvihill, C Connolly, O Dowling, S Meagher, J Stafford, L Carty, C Frawley, P Collins.

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