venue: Ada Ciganlija, Belgrade
3rd July 2007
Full Match Report
U16 EUROPEAN CUP: FINAL
A sensational finish - and brilliant second half defensive display which kept their opponents scoreless - saw England take the inaugural European Rugby League under 16s title, with a 14-12 win over favourites France in the decider in Belgrade.
Outstanding scrum half Greg McNally claimed all England’s points, his winning penalty coming in the final minute. The French outscored their rivals by two tries to one but their determined efforts were eventually undone by the sin binnings of half backs Maxim Fages and Tony Gigot in a feisty first half.
McNally kicked three penalties in the opening forty minutes but the Tricolors led 12-6 at the break courtesy of tries to centre Antony Rastouil and Gigot with Morgan Escaré landing a conversion and Gigot a penalty.
The French tried everything to break the English resolve in a desperate second half onslaught but as they tired, McNally proved to be the match winner with a converted try and his last gasp match winner to delirious scenes.
Sin-binned: Fages (18), Gigot (30, Pelissier (41).
Nathan Corrie, Adam Russell, Darren Seeds, Adam Ramsden, Ryan Bulman, Ross Gainford, Gregg McNally (c), Michael Lithgow, Jack Sewell, James Donaldson, Curtis Pattinson, Karl Olstrum, Sean Fitzsimmons. Subs: Drew Dalton, Steven Nelson, Luke King, Philip Stewart
Morgan Escaré, Clément Dalarra, Quentin Nauroy, Anthony Rastouil, Clément Soubeyras, Tony Gigot, Maxime Fages, Théo Gonzalez, Guillaume Rey, Christopher Lafon, Jordan Rieux (c), Eloi Pelissier, Jordan Alvernhe. Subs: Jonathan Soum, Robin Raynal, Julian Bousquet, Gael Garreta