Joe Dunleavy was back in the Ireland team, but they lost 45-29 to Scotland in the World Rugby U20 Championship in France.
Ireland led 14-3 early on, but defensive lapses cost Ireland and they need to win against either Georgia or Japan in Sunday’s 11th-12th place play-off in order to save Ireland from dropping down to the second-tier World Rugby U-20 Trophy tournament for next season.
Dunleavy opened these Championships with a try against France in a defeat at Perpignan and it was disappointment at the same venue today.
Harry Byrne nipped over for a 10th-minute opening try and grubbered through to set up Peter Sylvester’s first try at this level, but the first half unravelled for Ireland as tries from Finlay Richardson (2) and Logan Trotter, coupled with Hugh O’Sullivan’s sin-binning, handed Scotland a 24-17 interval lead.
Third quarter touchdowns from replacement Guy Graham and Kyle Rowe had the Scots out of sight, and while tries from Tommy O’Brien and replacement Jack Daly sandwiched a Devante Onojaife effort, they were of little consolation to Ireland who remain winless after four rounds of the tournament, with an average of 31 points and four-and-a-half tries conceded per game.