venue: Stade Georges Mauro, Entraigues
16th April 2010
Full Match Report
FRANCE U16 v ENGLAND YOUTH
A spirited second half fightback came too late as England Youth were defeated 29-14 by France Under-16s in the second Test in Entraigues on Friday night. England battled hard after the break but left themselves with too much to do after falling 23-0 behind before the interval to opponents who had won the first Test 19-16 in Carpentras earlier in the week.
The tourists, all of who are aged 15 or 16 and are on scholarship schemes with Engage Super League and Co-operative Championships clubs, gave a good account of themselves as they gained valuable representative experience. The fightback was sparked by a try from Josh Sunley, the Leeds Rhinos and Hunslet Warriors winger, following good play by Tom Gilmore and Liam McAvoy.
Captain Danny Yates, the St Helens and Waterhead scrum-half, then crashed over for a try between the posts from a break by Ben Currie to imbue England with more belief. Gilmore, the Widnes Vikings and Halton stand-off, grabbed a third try but France held out to wrap up the series 2-0.
England head coach Dave Elliott said: “We are all very disappointed with the first half performance but we showed a lot of character and honesty in the second half. “I was particularly impressed by huge performances from Liam McAvoy, Steve Ward and John Bateman, all of whom really fronted up to the challenge of the impressive French side. This has been a huge learning and development curve for them, both as players and young men and I am sure it will help them in their bright Rugby League careers.”
Ferret, Maurel, Gaillard, Didone, Bident, Bissière, Fages, Bonneriez, Guasch (o), Garcia, Bouzinac, Romano, Margelet, Subs: Madani, Miloudi, Rouche, Barbaza.
Saul Beavis, Josh Sunley, Chris Taylor, James Saltonstall, Ben Warrilow, Thomas Gilmore, Danny Yates, Liam McAvoy, Conner Spencer, Bradley Ashurst, John Bateman, Ben Currie, Stevie Ward. Subs: Lewis Foster, Bobby Tyson-Wilson, William Milner, Jordan Baldwinson