Canada U19 vs Ireland - Match #2

March 28 2018

Canada U19 vs Ireland

Canada U19 Lose Second Match by -39 Differential to Ireland U18 Team: Full Match Video and Commentary

Canada went down to defeat 51-12, the exact -39 difference as last match (56-17). It was a slightly different Irish team than last match, the Leinster Schools Cup Finals were last Friday so those players at the top two schools, Blackrock College and Belvedere College were unavailable last match. So this might have been a slightly stronger Irish team this match, the standout last match #15 Oran McNulty was on the bench this match and came in at the 59 minute mark.

The pattern was set early, 1:49, the ball got out wide to Reid Davis #5, he had the two props and the inside centre in support. Davis is tackled and the Irish blindside is the only Ireland player in the vicinity, the same distance from the ball as the three Canadian players. He reacts so much faster and is going for the ball before the three Canadian players start to react. That's just pure instinct and reaction time. It can't be blamed on fitness a minute into the match, it's mental, reaction time, anticipating what's going to happen the next second, and intensity. The Canadian players looked like they were out for a pleasant walk in the park really in comparison. There's some technique as well, they were late but when they got there they couldn't budge the Irish player who they outweighed by a considerable amount.

2:42 Ireland set up a maul and score their first try. Canada's maul defence looked tentative, some of the players look a bit lost as to what they should be doing beyond just head down and push, very little disruptive action. It's a problem that plagues our senior team as well. It was all a bit too easy, training ground stuff and Canada's intensity to this point looks like it's at training level. They don't look match day mentally prepared at this point.

5:35 Canada get the ball down to the Ireland 22 with a grubber, Ireland setup a ruck and Canada don't contest, they spread out wide, two post defenders either side of the ruck. But the players are day dreaming a bit, again the mental preparation looks lacking, the Ireland forward looks up sees no one paying attention and charges through the middle of the ruck and scampers down the field. I swear the team's mental preparation for this match was drinking chamomile tea and listening to Enya tapes. Ireland score to go up by two tries.

8:52 Canada get some possession at Ireland 22 but no patience and the #10 tries a weak chip to the wing that's easily marked by Ireland and they clear quickly.

9:53 After winning the lineout Canada take it outside their 22, pass it back inside then kick it out on the full. Ireland lineout at 22.

11:50 Ireland very patient and controlled inside Canada's 22, multiple phases, good cover at breakdown, no threat of losing the ball. They just go through the multiple phases and cross the line. It's looking all so easy for Ireland, 3 tries in 12 minutes, more than a point a minute, they could hit 80+ unless they ease up or Canada get their head into the match.

14:30 Finally a good phase of play from Canada, they have the scrum about 40 metres outside of Ireland's goal line, they keep possession, multiple phases, protect the ball and score out wide. Best passage of play from them so far.

19:39 Canada have it at the Ireland 22 but the tighthead gets the ball, he's dropped fast, #8 in support but two Ireland defenders over the ball in a flash - another turnover.

22:20 Canada have the ball about 35 metres out, they have their share of possession but not always able to convert into points. Finally Ireland get called at the breakdown for not rolling away, it's kickable but Canada go for the lineout, the kick is terribly flubbed by the flyhalf, Ireland get possession.

28:21 Canada again turned over when they're on attack near the Ireland 22, a combination of runners getting the ball standing still so not much forward momentum and support just a fraction slow reacting.

29:12 Ireland score off the subsequent lineout, two passes and they scamper in, very weak defence from Canada, poor structure and poor tackling.

33:30 A scrum to Ireland and 3 passes they're through the line, 4th pass a try. The Canada defensive structure is incredibly fragile. If it was touch rugby they would have scored as a Canadian defender wasn't even able to put a touch on any of the receivers.


53:55 Finally a steal for Canada at the breakdown, #7 Peyton Eagar stops the Ireland attack a few metres from the goal line with a solo effort at the breakdown. Canada flub the ensuing lineout and clearance and Ireland have a scrum at the 22. They score in the corner after one phase.

59:56 Canada a few metres out, golden opportunity, forwards are slowly making their way, this is where patience and a leader on the field needs to stamp his mark. Canada find neither and try an all blacks, skip several players pass from the ruck that goes straight into touch. Should have been a try here.

1:05 Canada inside Ireland 22, almost get another one stolen. Anticipation and reaction time from support players just slower than Irish players, they get lucky and ref dings Irish for not releasing. Canada take the scrum, get a penalty, take a lineout but butcher the resulting attack after three phases with a poor pass.

1:09:42 Canada again on attack inside Ireland 22, they've had the posession and the field position but just haven't been able to finish it off. #23 the replacement fullback gets the ball with an overlap to his right but decides to cut back in, runs into Irish cross cover and loses the ball.

1:10:05 Bit of a Laurel and Hardy moment, Ireland clear from inside their 22, terrible clearing kick, two replacement backs #17 and #23 collide trying to catch the ball which spills into touch. Another couple of Canadian subs come in.

1:10:59 Nice line break by the hooker, haven't seen too many of those from Canada today, goes to Quentin James who can't hold on. He's not having the game he had in Match #1 after moving from second row to blindside flanker.

1:11:36 Nice counter ruck by Canada but ref gets this one wrong, calls not rolling away when there's no Canadian players lying on the ball.

1:14:31 Game is getting scrappy now, Ireland have lost their shape as well with all the subs. Canada get a yellow card as one of the props knocks down a pass as Ireland are threatening near the goal line. They take a lineout and maul one in quickly, not much opposition from Canada who look a little disorganized.

1:17:56 Canada inside Ireland 22, again, on attack but #7 and #8 get tangled up trying to get the pass, neither of them catch it and Ireland are off on attack again. Canada steal the ball at the breakdown but the Italian referee calls a penalty, second time he's called Canada harshly for hard work at the breakdown.

1:19:17 Finally Quentin James gets a line break, duplicating his efforts in Match #1. They've been few and far between today. He gets tackled, Canada recycle and the ball gets out to #7 Peyton Eagar on the wing, he breaks a couple of tackles and Canada have it about 10 metres out. It goes through several phases, side to side, this is how Canada should have played from the start. Tyler Wong #2 gets an offload about 15 metres out, steps the defender, and scores under the posts, nice work. He was probably the man of the match for Canada, put in a lot of work and touched the ball quite often in attack.

1:21:39 A real shame Canada couldn't end on a high note, on the ensuing kickoff they try to play 7s rugby, drop the ball inside their 22, miss tackles and Ireland get one right back. It would have been much better to see them clear the ball into touch and play structured XVs rugby. You can hear the man behind the video camera sigh, I would as well in his position. Anyone who wants to play higher level rugby has to learn the basic strategy of clearing your zone from the kickoff. If you make the Barbarians one day, feel free to play 50/50 rugby inside your 22.

1:23:20 It's turning into a 7s match now, gaps opening up, Ireland scamper down the field looking for another one but knock it on.

1:25:19 Ireland seem to be having fun now throwing the ball around, Canada has lost all defensive shape. Ireland score another. This is not the way you want to end the match.

Overall Canada started slowly, finished poorly, had a few bright spots but few and far between. Tyler Wong #2 probably best player on the day for Canada. The Irish players are already a few years ahead in development at the U18 level. Their reading of the game and anticipation of what's going to happen is evident, at this level most Canadian players are reacting instead of anticipating therefore they're a step or two behind at the breakdown. The Canadian defense is paper thin, once the first man is beaten there's little cross cover as opposed to the Irish defence which always has layers to it. Again that's players working hard off the ball to fill in the gaps, is it fitness, is it a mental attitude, a work ethic or all of the above?

So some of the older player will be returning home leaving a true U19 team to take on the provincial teams now. The U18 6 Nations Festival starts Saturday so the best Irish players will be involved in that. We'll see how Canada do against the provinces Leinster, Ulster and Munster starting on Friday.

March 30 – Canada U19 vs Leinster
April 02 – Canada U19 vs Ulster
April 05 – Canada U19 vs Munster


Campbell Clarke (Swilers); Lucas Tuffin (Castaway Wanderers), Evan Norris (University of British Columbia), Dalton Campbell (Calgary Hornets), John Buck (Calgary Canucks); Myles Donoghue (University of British Columbia), Brandon Schellenberger (Castaway Wanderers); Guerschom Mukendi (Stoney Creek Camels), Tyler Wong (University of Victoria), Tyler Rowland (Toronto Nomads) (capt), Hunter Grant (Westshore Valhallians), Reid Davis (Bayside), Quentin James (Perpignan Academy), Peyton Eagar (Nanaimo Hornets), Nicholas Carson (Castaway Wanderers).

Replacements: Nathan Lake (Windsor Machine), Jim Newman (University of British Columbia), Siaki Vikilani (Burnaby Lake), David Stolz (Barrhaven Scottish), Thomas Hagan (Swilers), Brock Gallagher (Strathcona Druids), Harrison Hooke (Castaway Wanderers), Kyle Tremblay (Bayside).


Shane Jennings (Ballinasloe/Garbally College); Jack Hunt (Rockwell College), Saul O'Carroll (Buccaneers/Garbally College), Tommy Downes (CBC Cork), Tom Bacon (Henley College/Wasps/IQ Rugby); Thomas Armstrong (Methodist College Belfast), Shane Murphy (Skerries/St. Joseph's Rush); Mark Donnelly (CBC Cork), Aaron Hennessy (The Alfa Project, Scariff/Ennis), Liam Winnett (Buccaneers/Marist College), Eoin O'Connor (Waterpark/Gaelcholaiste Phortlairge), Darragh Murray (Buccaneers/Coláiste Chíaráin), Ciaran Booth (St. Ambrose College/Sale Sharks/IQ Rugby), Evan Murphy (Nenagh Ormond/Nenagh CBS) (capt), Ed Brennan (Blackrock College).
Replacements used: Ben Daly (Waterpark) for Armstrong (half-time), Chris Moore (Beechen Cliff School/IQ Rugby) for Murphy (40 mins), Mark Nicholson (Wicklow/Colaiste Chill Mhantain) for Hennessy, Fionn Flanagan (Bruff) for Donnelly, Paddy McAlpine (Campbell College) for Winnett, Paddy Kelly (St. Munchin's College) for O'Connor (all 47), Charlie O'Doherty (Newcastle West/Ard Scoil na Mhuire) for Murphy, Joshua Dunne (Nottingham Academy/Denstone College/IQ Rugby) for Booth, Hayden Hyde (Harlequins Academy/Cranleigh School/IQ Rugby) for Downes (all 54), Oran McNulty (Bath Academy/Millfield/IQ Rugby) for Jack Hunt (59).

Canada Names Team for Second Match vs Ireland: Wednesday 5am PT

Canada lost the first match 56-17 and hope to make it a closer match this time around. It will be interesting to see the Ireland lineup for this match as the U18 6 Nations Festival begins on Saturday and according to one article that team will be selected from the U18 Clubs & Schools team that defeated Canada and the U18 Schools team that lost to France. Apparently lots of U18 talent among the schools and clubs in Ireland. There's the chance that some of the outstanding players in match one might be rested for the 6 Nations festival on Saturday.

For Canada, a few changes, man of the match for Canada, Quentin James moves from second row to blindside flanker, likely to get him more involved in open play as he was effective with ball in hand. Tyler Wong gets the start at hooker, the props remain the same, Reid Davis comes off the bench to take Quentin James second row spot. #7 Peyton Eagar and #8 Nicholas Carson retain their spots.

The halfback combination remains the same Schellenberger to Donoghue. Evan Norris is moved from wing to outside centre, and Dalton Campbell is shifted to inside centre. Campbell Clarke comes off the bench to replace Kyle Tremblay at fullback. Lucas Tuffin gets his first selection to the match day 23 and a start on the wing.

Head Coach Dean Murten:

"For the last few days in training we have focused on getting more width in defence and getting off the line faster to attack the Irish attack. In attack we have focused on getting support to the ball carrier faster, hopefully this will turn the great line-breaks we had into points, as well in attack we have worked on keeping our width and depth. We have also talked about being patient, and game management in the opposition 22.

"We must increase the physicality by another 20%, and work a lot harder when we don’t have the ball, we must decrease the number of missed tackles, and improve our gain-line efficiency from 68.9% to around 80%, then we will put Ireland on the back foot."

Starting Line-up vs Ireland Clubs & Schools:

1. Guerschom Mukendi
2. Tyler Wong
3. Tyler Rowland (C)
4. Hunter Grant
5. Reid Davis
6. Quentin James
7. Peyton Eagar
8. Nicholas Carson
9. Brandon Schellenberger
10. Myles Donoghue
11. John Buck
12. Dalton Campbell
13. Evan Norris
14. Lucas Tuffin
15. Campbell Clarke
16. Nathan Lake
17. Jim Newman
18. Siaki Vikilani
19. David Stolz
20. Thomas Hagan
21. Harrison Hooke
22. Brock Gallagher
23. Kyle Tremblay


Dean Murten – Head Coach
Tony LaCarte – Assistant Coach
Conan Cooper – Strength and Conditioning Coach
Ben Motum – Therapist
Des Lynch – Manager and Mental skills coach


March 24 – Canada U19 vs Ireland Clubs & Schools - Result: ICS 56-17 Canada
March 28 – Canada U19 vs Ireland Clubs & Schools - 12:00pm Local Time (8:00am ET/5:00am PT)
March 30 – Canada U19 vs Leinster
April 02 – Canada U19 vs Ulster
April 05 – Canada U19 vs Munster

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