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Five Cardiff players from Wales Under-20 squad called up for Spain News

Five Cardiff players from Wales Under-20 squad called up for Spain News

Richard Whiffin has named five Cardiff Rugby players in his Wales Under-20 squad to face Spain Under-20s in the second round of Group A of the Under-20 World Championship on Thursday at the Athlone Sports Stadium in Cape Town (UK, 1pm).

Defenders Kodi Stone, Steff Emmanuel, Elijah Evans and Matty Young are all named in the starting line-up, with Harri Wilde on the bench.

He made radical changes to the side that narrowly lost to New Zealand in their opening match on Saturday, with only winger Harry Rees-Weldon, captain Ryan Woodman along with reserve Jonny Green and reserve Morgan Morse returning for a second successive match.

Wales will be buoyed by their thrilling second-half display against New Zealand, where they managed to overturn a 21-point deficit and eventually secure a defeat bonus point along with a try bonus point to keep themselves in contention for a semi-final place.

“We always felt we would finish the game strongly with the bench we had so we were pleased with that aspect of the game but we were disappointed that New Zealand got three points ahead of us which included some long range tries – they had a really good skill set which we struggled to deal with at times but it was a really brave performance to get back into the game,” Whiffin said.

“I thought the changes we made in the second half had a real impact on the pitch.

“We got two bonus points from the game, one for a four-try bonus and one for losing within seven points, so that keeps us alive in the group to qualify for the first round of the semi-finals, so that’s a big focus for us going forward.

“We saw Spain put in a really stubborn performance against France – France took a long time to eliminate them.

“They have huge energy and will cause us problems, but we went into the tournament confident that we would challenge in every game, so obviously we now turn our attention to Spain, who are next.

“It was always part of the plan to give as many players as possible a starting place in the first two games and I am confident that the boys selected will step up and do a great job.”

Wales U20s v Spain U20s, Thursday 4 July, Athlone Sports Stadium, Cape Town, KO, 1pm, UK

1 Ioan Emanuel (Bath Rugby)
2 Harry Thomas (Scarlet)
3 Kian’s Rental (Ospreys)
4 Jonny Green (Harlequins)
5 Nick Thomas (Dragons)
6 Ryan Woodman (Dragons – Captain)
7 Morgan Morse (Ospreys)
8 Owen Conquer (Dragons RFC)
9 Rhodri Lewis (Scarlet)
10 Harri Ford (RFC Dragons)
11 Kodi Stone (Cardiff Rugby)
12 Steff Emanuel (Cardiff Rugby)
13 Elijah Evans (Cardiff Rugby)
14 Harry Rees-Weldon (Dragons RFC)
15 Matty Young (Cardiff Rugby)

Substitutions

16 Isaac Young (Scarlet)
17 Jordan Morris (Dragons RFC)
18 Sam Scott (Bristol Bears)
19 Osian Thomas (Leicester Tigers)
20 Will Austin (Sale Sharks)
21 Ieuan Davies (Bath Rugby)
22 Harri Wilde (Cardiff Rugby)
23 Louie Hennessey (Bath Rugby)