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Five Cardiff player included in Wales U20s squad to face France

International | 8th July 2024

Five Cardiff players have been included in Wales U20 Men’s squad to face reigning champions France

Cardiff flanker Lucas de la Rua returns to the starting lineup alongside captain Ryan Woodman and Morgan Morse to round out a formidable U20s back row. 

The openside flanker started against New Zealand but was rested for the comfortable victory over Spain in the second group game. 

In the backs we see Steffan Immanuel at inside centre and fullback Matty Young both retain their positions for game 3 of the group. Both players were left out of the opening game of the tournament but seem to have proven themselves to Richard Whiffin ahead of the France fixture on Tuesday. 

Victory in game three would mean automatic qualification for both Wales and France, and with only the best second place team making the semi-finals this match is of utmost importance to either nation’s chances to secure their place into the knockout stage.

“This is a huge game for the boys as our destiny is in our own hands if we want to make the semi-finals,” said Whiffin.

“We face a huge challenge against the defending champions. They will be hurting after their narrow defeat to New Zealand so we know what to expect. But we have prepared well and name a side which I believe can take the game to France,” said Whiffin.

Maximum bonus points was always the goal for Wales against Spain, with Wales now sitting as the best place runner-up in the tournament.

“We had a lot of possession in the second half and probably didn’t come away with the points we felt we probably earned but we were happy to come away with the five points.

“Our target was to get five points to keep us alive in the pool and that is what we got.

Our discipline needs to be better, particularly at the start of games. We are giving teams opportunity to build field position against us so that is something we are definitely talking about and working on.”

Rotation was always expected from this squad, as Richiard Whiffin has expressed an eagerness to get everyone in the squad meaningful minutes ahead of the latter stages of the tournament. 

“Like I’ve said from the start, we are really happy with the 30 we have got, we think anyone can start and anyone can sit on the bench and provide an impact. All 30 players have now had a taste of footy which can only be better for the boys leading into the back end of the tournament.”

Wales U20 v France U20, Athlone Sports Stadium, Tuesday 9 July, KO 3.30pm

1 Josh Morse (Scarlets)
2 Isaac Young (Scarlets)
3 Sam Scott (Bristol Bears)
4 Jonny Green (Harlequins)
5 Osian Thomas (Leicester Thomas)
6 Ryan Woodman (Dragons RFC – Capt)
7 Lucas De La Rua (Cardiff Rugby)
8 Morgan Morse (Ospeys)
9 Ieuan Davies (Bath Rugby)
10 Harri Ford (Dragons RFC)
11 Aidan Boshoff (Bristol Bears)
12 Steffan Emanuel (Cardiff Rugby)
13 Louie Hennessey (Bath Rugby)
14 Macs Page (Scarlets)
15 Matty Young (Cardiff Rugby)

16 Harry Thomas (Scarlets)
17 Jordan Morris (Dragons RFC)
18 Kian Hire (Ospreys)
19 Nick Thomas (Dragons RFC)
20 Owen Conquer (Dragons RFC)
21 Rhodri Lewis (Scarlets)
22 Harri Wilde (Cardiff Rugby)
23 Elijah Evans (Cardiff Rugby)