World U20s 2015: New Zealand thrash hapless Scotland

Baby Blacks rack up 65 unanswered points in Parma as Scott Robertson's side cruise to 68-10 win in Pool C

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff

New Zealand started the World Rugby U20 Championship with a bang as they ran in nine tries in a 68-10 win over Scotland at the Stadio Lanfranchi in Parma.

When we do get good clean ball, and when we’ve got space, we want players to really rip teams apart.

Scott Robertson

Despite the scoreline, the Baby Blacks had to come from behind after Scotland took a surprise 10-3 lead with a fortunate try from Lewis Carmichael, who appeared to have dropped the ball, and a conversion and penalty from outside-half Rory Hutchinson while New Zealand had centre Jack Goodhue in the sin-bin early in the game.

But the Scots looked short of belief for much of the match, which turned into a thrashing as New Zealand racked up 65 unanswered points to record the most points and highest score on day one of the tournament.

“When we do get good clean ball and when we’ve got space we want players to really rip teams apart,” said Robertson.

“For us it’s exciting to see our players score nine tries.

“We played great rugby off turnover ball, but we couldn’t really get much structured rugby off set piece.

“So when we turned it over while we were defending, we really capitialised on it. This is certainly an area of strength for us.”

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Akira Ioane on the burst for the Baby BlacksPhoto: Massimiliano Pratelli/Fotosportit

Going seven points down to Scotland appeared to spark the Baby Blacks into life as they go in search of a first title since 2011, leading to two quick tries through Canterbury full-back George Bridge and fearsome North Harbour and Blues wing Tevita Li to take the lead.

Mitchell Hunt landed a second penalty before impressive Blues back-row forward Akira Ioane powered over for New Zealand’s third try, converted by Hunt to take a 27-10 into the break.

Barely a minute after the restart, Auckland and Blues number eight Blake Gibson went over to secure the try-scoring bonus point.

Stirling County’s Archie Russell – younger brother of Scotland international Finn – was sin-binned in the 47th minute for a dangerous tackle and the Baby Blacks were ruthless in exploiting their numerical advantage as Auckland flanker Mitchell Karpik bagged himself a try on his 20th birthday before Goodhue made up for his earlier yellow card to go over for New Zealand’s sixth try with Hunt converting both tries to take the score to 46-10 with 25 minutes remaining.

There was more to come from Robertson’s youngsters through replacement Hawke’s Bay lock Geoffrey Cridge, Hunt and Auckland centre to secure a commanding victory ahead of their contests with Argentina and Ireland.

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