IRB Under 20 Championship: South Africa v New Zealand Preview

IRB Under 20 Championship: Round 1 Preview

The Junior‘Boks and the Baby Blacks will go head-to-head on Wednesday the 12th of June in a game that will decide which side bags top spot on the Pool C standings.

Pool C pacesetters New Zealand and South Africa will clash in the pick of the Under 20 Championship Round 3 action. Both teams have enjoyed stellar starts to the campaign racking up bonus points wins over Georgia and Scotland.

Which of the arch-rivals will come out on top this Wednesday? Darry Worthington gives his opinion on that below.

South Africa v New Zealand
Wednesday 12 June
Racecourse Stadium
15:30


To Win (80 Mins)
South Africa
Draw
New Zealand

*Odds to be added upon release

Handicap
South Africa
New Zealand

*Handicaps to be added upon release

South Africa
This year’s Baby ‘Boks have looked a completely different beast to the 2018 edition, with the current crop playing an entertaining brand of rugby that is not reliant on individual brilliance but rather a collective effort.

Their forward pack has been marvelous with their front row getting through their core duties as well as offering solid ball-carrying options. The second row have also contributed with carries and have also been lethal on defence and at the breakdown, while their loosies have linked play brilliantly.

The backs have been just as solid with their 9/10 axis dictating play brilliantly and their centres offering strong ball-carrying options, while their back three have been superb on the counter.

If there is one area the South Africans have been found wanting it has been their inability to dominate games from the start. The two games they have played thus far have seen them act as real slow burners with the baby ‘Boks struggling to execute in the first half before running rampant in the second.

Their opening game against Scotland followed the aforementioned script with a late flurry of tries seeing the South African young guns run out 43-19 victors.

The South Africans must have been asked to produce a similar plot line against Georgia as the Eastern Europeans remained in the game up until the second-half where another late blitz from the Junior ‘Boks saw them to a 48-20 victory.

New Zealand
The Junior All Blacks have also been great to watch thus far with there free-running rugby seeing them run up mammoth scores against Georgia and Scotland.

They also have a solid forward pack while their backline is full of the sort of mercurial talent that one would expect from a rugby side donning all black gear and representing New Zealand.

Like their South African counterparts, the Kiwis do have their flaws with the defensive side of their game not up to scratch at the moment.

They simply are leaking far too many tries as was the case against Scotland this past Saturday where they shipped a number of late five-pointers which saw the ‘Scots bring the scoreline to a respectable 52-33.

If they make the same rudimentary errors on defence, then the Springboks will punish them even more so than the ‘Scots did.

Verdict: South Africa
I think the Baby Boks will take this one. They are playing great rugby at the minute while the Junior All Blacks seem to be stuck in third gear.

Written by Darry Worthington for Hollywoodbets

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