Rugby League

England Lions

5 Jun 2023

Report | Wales U16 32-34 England Community Lions U16

Report | Wales U16 32-34 England Community Lions U16

What a breathless game!

Two tries in the last fifteen minutes from hooker Lucas Mulqueeney tipped the encounter back in the Community Lions' favour after Wales came back from 24-4 down at half-time to lead 32-24 just past the hour mark.

Wales made an encouraging start when Jake Nottingham scored seconds after Lions Tyler Sykes had been shown the yello card for holding down Jacob Jones following a long run from the winger.

Quick passes left released Nottingham, although the goal kick fell short. 

Wales had another gilt-edged chance when Joseph Johnson was put in touch thanks to a selfless challenge from Jaylen Conway. 

Lions hit back and took the lead on 13 minutes when Kian Goodhand crossed after collecting a great pass from Nathaniel Parker. Stan Beaumont converted confidently and when Sykes returned from the sin bin he quickly latched onto a final ball from Conway.

In the heat coach Tom Wood rotated his pack and Zavier Dele Charley hit an excellent line to score with Zac Mannion adding the conversion. Just minutes later captain Henley Donnan got on the outside of the defence and handed inside to the supporting Parker who finished well. There was no goal, but the Lions led 20-4, then just out from the break, Dele Charley went forty metres for a spectacular score before half-time.

Two tries in the first five minutes put Wales within touching distance as Ethan Paterson and Jones scored. Wales scored another from Harri Jacob off Sam Grice's destructive surge and Junior Westwood, a real thorn in the Lions' side, fashioned another two tries for Samuel Dickenson and Nottingham grabbed his second with Westwood's goal making it 32-24 to Wales.

The Lions had been devoid of possession for over twenty minutes and as soon as they got the ball and a bit of position, they made it count with Mulqueeney diving between two defenders for his first score on 66 minutes. Mannion goaled to close the gap to two points before Mulqueeney was alert for his second nine minutes from time to nudge the Lions in front. From that position, there was only one winner and Lions completed the job.

Wales: Kai Sengul, Joseph Johnson, Sam Grice, Jake Nottingham, Jacob Jones; Junior Westwood, Henry Parker; Harri Jacob, Finlay Walker, Nathan Davies, Kaden Johnson, Ethan Paterson, Kade Woodward. 

Subs: Leo Bonham, Samuel Dickenson, Morgan Marozzelli, Charlie Bennett, Owain Martin, Jacob Morris, Jake Sheppard.

Tries: Nottingham 2, Paterson, Jones, Jacob, Dickenson.

Goals: Paterson 3, Westwood 1.

Lions: Jaylen Conway, Tyler Sykes, Diego Walker, Kian Goodhand, Oliver Shallcross; Jack Bibey (VC), Nathaniel Parker, Arbern Pervizaj, Stan Beaumont, Alfie Cox, Henley Donnan (C), Alex Golightly, Leyton Dockway

Subs: Lucas Mulqueeny, Lloyd Stainton, Jayden Aaron, Zac Mannion, Zavier Dele Charley, Lewis Pilling.

Tries: Goodhand, Sykes, Dele Charley 2, Parker, Mulqueeney 2.

Goals: Beaumont 1, Mannion 2.


By Dave Parkinson

Image: @PhotoMKS