Tries: A Evans, S Otten, J Raikes, J Dixon, H Amos, E Dee; Cons: Maynard (3), G Thomson; Pen: Maynard.
Wales: H Amos (Dragons); L Hudd (Dragons), S Hughes (Scarlets), J Dixon (Dragons), A Evans (Ospreys); J Maynard (SCarlets), J Raikes (Blues); N Smith (Ospreys), S Otten (Ospreys), C Lewis (Blues), J Helps (Scarlets), S Andrews (Dragons), B Roach (Blues), J Benjamin (Dragons), C Davies (Ospreys).
Replacements: E Dee (Dragons), G Rees McPherson (Blues), N Thomas (Ospreys), S Parker (Blues), S Matthews (Dragons), S Clarke (Blues), G Thomson (Blues), B Roberts (Ospreys).
Wales U18s off to winning start
30 March 2012, 06:26 pm ::
Match Report By Liz Jones
Wales Under 18 got their FIRA-AER European Championship off to a positive start with a 41-8 victory over Italy in Madrid.
Allan Lewis' side notched seven tries on their way into the Elite Group semi-finals, where they will now play England on Tuesday.
The youngsters, led by Blues flanker Ben Roach, had a solid scrum and were excellent in defence against a dogged Italian outfit. After an early Italian penalty there were first half tries from Ospreys pair Ashley Evans and Scott Otten, Blues scrum half Joel Raikes and impressive Dragons centre Jack Dixon, who finished off a particularly well-worked team effort. Scarlets outside half Jack Maynard adding a penalty and two conversions to take the half-time score to 27-3.
Despite the scoreline, Wales had been unable to hold onto the ball for any sustained period in the first half, an area that will need to be worked on ahead of the semi-final clash on Tuesday after England beat Georgia 59-8.
Dragons full back Hallam Amos showed his class after 50 minutes, cutting through the Italian defence as part of a great backline move to score, converted by Maynard, and replacement hooker, Dragons' Elliot Dee finished off the scoring for Wales with a try with 10 minutes remaining, replacement No 10 Gareth Thomson adding the extras.
Wales Under 18 team manager Gethin Watts said, "Although the coaches are pleased with the result which gives us a great platform to build on, we have a number of things to work on including the line-out and ball retention.
"It was very hot in the Madrid sun, and with a short turnaround before our next game, we have to concentrate on recovery first but then we want to back up this win with a strong performance against England."