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U20 Championship: Key Fixtures & Players To Watch – Round 3

Bet Central bring you 4 key fixtures and the players to watch for Round 3 of the World Rugby U20 Championship.

U20 Championship Key Fixtures Players To Watch

Round 3 of the pool stages in the World Rugby u20 Championship will begin on a sombre note as the rugby world mourns the loss of Greg Oliver who succumbed to a paragliding accident while in South Africa to watch his son Jack with the Irish u20s, but it is a crucial round nonetheless and Bet Central brings you the key fixtures and players to watch.

Italy v Georgia

Perhaps the greatest story of this u20 Championship thus far has been how Italy and Georgia have fared against tier 1 nations considered to be better than them. Italy upset hosts South Africa while Georgia had the better of Argentina to stay within reach of a semi-final spot for both sides. 

They now take on each other with similar strengths, tough and abrasive forwards with quick and skilful backlines. The fixture could not be more evenly matched with both looking to make history for a 1st time in the knockout stage. It should make for a tasty battle.

Players to watch: Impassioned pre-game speeches or not, Italy have quite the player in David Odiase, he is a formidable ball carrier and gets through a ton of work. He also possesses ball skills that mean he wouldn’t look out at place at no.8. Another multi-skilled loose forward to look out for is Rati Zazadze, the Georgian had a terrific outing against Argentina in round 2.

Australia v England

A fixture between Australia and England always has some extra bite not only because of the rivalries between their sporting fraternities but the close history of both countries. It should be no different in Cape Town as both the junior sides fight to make the semis.

As things stand, it seems to be an advantage for England on the log, but Australia will be no pushovers as they boast some very exciting talent in the backline and a tough core up front. This one is a game for the traditionalists as the old enemies meet again.

Players to watch: Daniel Maiava made his Super Rugby debut for the Melbourne Rebels this year and brings some pedigree to the  Australian u20s. He will come against Lewis Chessum who is a talisman and captain for England, the younger brother to full English international Ollie Chessum, he looks well on track to play for the senior national side as well.

France v Wales

France are by far the most impressive side in the competition this year and it is no surprise that they’ve won the last 2 editions. Wales, as was seen in their narrow loss to the Baby Blacks, are no pushovers by any means. 

The Welsh pose a threat, especially with France resting a few of their 1st choice lads, but such is the progress of the French junior structures over the last few years that even an understrength team is capable of winning. It should be an intriguing battle. 

Players to watch: Theo Attissogbe has had some sensational performances for France on the wing, but he gets an opportunity at 15 in this game. Opposite him for Wales will be Cardiff’s Cameron Winnett who despite being smaller uses his speed and technical ability to good effect.

South Africa v Argentina

The final fixture of the pool stage in this competition, will most likely have a huge bearing on whether one of Italy or Georgia make history. 

South Africa have underwhelmed for the most part, while Argentina will have been disappointed to go from the high of beating Italy to being unable to score in a humbling defeat to Georgia. Both teams are seeking redemption and beyond that a semi-final spot. Both sides will definitely go hard in this one.

Players to watch: Imad Khan looks like he may be the best player in the South African u20 group, if he continues on his trajectory, he is destined for senior Bok honours. His immediate problem is facing a man who in Argentina is also considered a future Los Pumas scrumhalf, Agustin Moyano

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