U20 Japan Suffer One-point Loss to U20 Wales

In their third and final pool game at the World Rugby U20 Championship in France, U20 Japan suffered a one-point loss to U20 Wales in Perpignan on Thursday, 7 June 2018.

After going down 67-0 to New Zealand in their opening match and then losing 54-19 loss to Australia in their second game, Japan were highly competitive in this narrowest of losses to Wales.

The Japanese actually outscored the Welsh three tries to two, but goal kicking denied them a memorable victory.

Right wing Halatoa Vailea posted the opening try in the match to give Japan an early 5-0 lead, but Wales struck back midway through the half with a five-pointer to half Harri Morgan. Fullback Cai Evans added the conversion to give Wales a 7-5 lead. Japan responded with a try to hooker Miyu Arai, but Wales closed out the half with two penalties to Evans to give the Welsh a 13-10 lead at the break.

As the second half progressed, Wales extended the lead to 18-10 though a try to left wing Dewi Cross, but Japan set up a grandstand finish with a late try to left wing Siosaia Fifita. Unfortunately, time ran out for the Japanese with Wales holding on to record a one-point, 18-17 win.

U20 Wales 18 d U20 Japan 17

Date: Thursday, 7 June 2018
Venue: Stade Aime-Giral, Perpignan
Kick-off: 18.30 (01.00 +1 JST)
Halftime: U20 Wales 13 – U20 Japan 10

U20 Wales 18 – Tries: Harri Morgan and Dewi Cross; Conversion: Cai Evans; Penalties: Cai Evans 2 d

U20 Japan 17 – Tries: Miyu Arai, Siosaia Fifita and Halatoa Vailea; Conversion: Yuto Mori.

U20 Wales: 1- Rhys Davies, 2- Dewi Lake, 3- Chris Coleman, 4- Lewis Ellis-Jones, 5- Jack Pope, 6- Tommy Reffell (c), 7- Lennon Greggains, 8- Taine Basham, 9- Harri Morgan, 10- Ben Thomas, 11- Dewi Cross, 12- Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, 13- Ioan Nicholas, 14- Corey Baldwin and 15- Cai Evans. Reserves: 16- Iestyn Harris, 17- Rhys Carre, 18- Rhys Henry, 19- Max Williams, 20- Ben Fry, 21- Dane Blacker, 22- Ryan Conbeer and 23- Max Llewellyn. Coach: Geraint Lewis.

U20 Japan: 1- Gakuto Ishida, 2- Miyu Arai, 3- Rento Tsukayama, 4- Kanji Shimokawa, 5- Ryuga Hashimoto, 6- Kai Yamamoto, 7- Hisanobu Okayama (c), 8- Asipeli Moala, 9- Shinobu Fujiwara, 10- Hiroto Mamada, 11- Siosaia Fifita, 12- Yuto Mori, 13- Sioeli Vakalahi, 14- Halatoa Vailea and 15- Kyohei Yamasawa. Reserves: 16- Yuichiro Taniguchi, 17- Yusuke Yamada, 18- Shohei Oyama, 19- Kaito Aibe, 20- Shota Fukui, 21- Atora Hondo, 22- Itsuki Kodama and 23- Yu Saruta. Coach: Satoru Endo.