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Home > News > England Reds win Wellington thriller
Your News England Reds win Wellington thriller

ENGLAND Reds Under 16s staged a stirring second half fightback to snatch a 27-23 win over France A in their second match of the Wellington Festival in Berkshire today.

France appeared to be heading for victory when they led 20-13 at half time but England Reds scored two converted tries after the break with the winner being set up by fly-half Charlie Wicks on his home ground for centre Charlie Esam (Bedford School, Ampthill, Northampton Saints Academy and East Midlands).

The match was played in energy-sapping heat which tested the stamina of both sides. The Reds also required resilience to beat a well-drilled French side having lost lock Tom Ellis to the England Under 16 side preparing for tomorrow’s international against Italy Under 17s at Macclesfield.

The Reds trailed to an early penalty but number eight Dan Grange (Ilkley GS, Ilkley RFC, Leeds Carnegie Academy and Yorkshire) got them on the scoreboard with his fourth try of the festival to follow his first day hat-trick against Canada Under 17s.

In a see-saw contest the lead regularly changed hands but Wicks (Wellington College, Reeds RFC, London Irish Academy and Berkshire) kicked a penalty and winger Tim Jeffers (St Ambrose College, Warrington RFC, Sale Sharks Academy and Cheshire) crossed for the Reds’ second try.

The Reds were seven points adrift at the break and ten points behind soon afterwards when France kicked a penalty.

But England Reds fought back superbly when full-back Howard Packman (Northampton School for Boys, Old Northamptonians, Northampton Saints Academy and East Midlands) picked up a loose ball and jinked his way past five tacklers for a stunning individual try which Wicks improved.

Wicks then set up Easam for the winning try, delaying his pass then delivering it to perfection to send the centre over. Wicks added the conversion for good measure.

England Reds play their third and final match against Scotland Under 17s at Wellington on April 22 (11am). Scotland beat England Blues 38-10 earlier today.

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