Wales Under 18 A played with huge gusto and no little skill at Neath to beat Australia Schools 18-15 on Friday.
Australia tackled well and came back strongly at us but it was good to see our defence stand up to it
A penalty four minutes from time by Coleg Sir Gar and Scarlets fly half Dan Jones gave the Welshmen a deserved win in front of a good four figure crowd at The Gnoll.
The victory will give the full Wales side a huge boost in their preparations to face the Australians in the international at Neath on Wednesday evening.
Wales forwards coach Euros Evans was delighted with the performance.
"We started off with a bang to score 12 points and this gave us the confidence to take the game to the Australians." he said.
"It rattled them and we could have got a couple more tries if the ball had run more kindly. That said, Australia tackled well and came back strongly at us but it was good to see our defence stand up to it."
Evans confirmed a number of the A side will start on Wednesday after this impressive display and it will be a shock if one of those is not Tyler Morgan.
The Newport and Dragons centre was in terrific form, with his strong and balanced running, abrasive defence and reading of angles and space.
The Rodney Parade product scored a try after 14 minutes when he shrugged off tacklers on a 50 metre run after a thrilling counter from deep by Coleg Llandrillo full back Morgan Williams.
Fly half Jones converted and three minutes later, Williams again ran with purpose and flair to put scrum half Dan Brooks over for a 12-0 lead.
Australia were visibly stung by the intense Welsh start but slowly recovered their composure, classy centre Taane Milne slicing through for a score just before the break. Fly half Mitchell Third converted.
The tourists looked more confident after the interval and Third dummied through to tie the scores.
Wales looked a little unsure of themselves but a yellow card for Australian flanker David Morris gave Wales the advantage, Jones slotting a penalty.
Third then levelled things up at 15-15 but with the Welsh forwards getting through a tremendous amount of work, they earned a penalty which Jones kicked to secure the win.
Wales Under 18 A: Tries: Morgan, Brooks; Conv: D Jones; Pens: D Jones (2)
Australia Schools: Tries: Milne, Third; Conv: Third; Pen: Third
Wales A: M Williams (Llandrillo College/RGC 1404); L Lewis (Coleg Gwent/Dragons), G Smith (Cardiff Metro/Blues), T Morgan (Newport/Dragons), J Adams (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets); D Jones (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets), D Brooks (Cardiff Univ/Ospreys);H Walsh (Bishop Gore CS/Ospreys),T Myhill (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets), A Jeffries (Coleg Gwent/Dragons), S Davies (Coleg Y Cymoedd/Blues), M Dodd (Olchfa CS/Ospreys), T Phillips (Coleg Sir Gar/Scarlets) (capt), H Keddie (Coleg Gwent/Dragons), O Griffiths (Coleg Gwent/Dragons)
Replacements used : L Belcher (Coleg Y Cymoedd/Blues), K Bale (Coleg Gwent/Dragons), G Allan (Bedwas/Dragons), Jared Evans (Coleg Y Cymoedd/Blues),
Australia: J Todd; A Kellaway (capt), T Milne, K Morgan, A Henley; M Third, M Sorovi; F Sa'aga, C McIerney, L Cannell, M Jones, D Morris, R Warren-Vosayaco, D Macmillan
Replacements used: C Guttenbell, A Mafi, N Hanigan, T Tai, J Tuttle, , H Hutchinson
We hear from Dove Men's Player of the Series Dan Biggar in this week's Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. We also speak to scrum half rivals Rhys Webb and Mike Phillips, the Swansea prop who will be a key player for Oxford in the Varsity Match at Twickenham, Ian Williams, plus John Dawes, John Taylor and Peter Morgan pay tribute to Ray Williams.
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.