Wasps U18 62-33 Newcastle Falcons U18
By Jack Davies
Wasps Under 18s secured their fourth win of the season to seal their place at Finals Day with an outstanding 62-33 victory over Newcastle Falcons Under 18s in Round 6 of the Premiership Rugby Under 18 Academy League at Broadstreet RFC on Saturday.
In testing conditions, Wasps started superbly with tries from Alfie Barbeary, Simone Panella and a quickfire double from Jude Williams, which saw them dominate the opening exchanges of the match.
This rampant attacking display continued with further scores from Alfred Mawdsley and Henry Mortimer before the visitors went over for their first try of the match through Theo Manihera.
Anjo Ademuwagun completed a phenomenal half as he scored Wasps’ seventh try which gave the youngsters a 36-point lead going into the half-time interval.
Newcastle U18s weren’t going down without a fight and stepped up their game after the break, with tries from Freddie Lockwood, George Barber and a brace from Chidera Obonna.
However, Wasps’ youngsters weren’t phased by this as a second try of the match from Panella and further scores from Zac Nearchou and Greg Fisilau completed a fantastic victory, to mark a third successive game in which they have passed the 50-point mark.
Wasps took the lead in the third minute after Barbeary made an excellent 20-metre break to score under the posts. Charlie Atkinson was successful with the conversion.
The ever-impressive Atkinson was involved yet again as his inch-perfect crossfield kick was superbly collected by Panella to go over for Wasps’ second try of the game.
Winger Williams continued his prolific scoring form with a quickfire brace to complete the try-bonus point within the first 16 minutes of the match.
The attacking superiority didn’t stop there, with the excellent Mario Pichardie securing a fantastic steal in the midfield, leading to a Mawdsley score under the posts, before a dazzling break from Evan Mortimer resulted in a Henry Mortimer try as Wasps asserted their dominance.
The visitors replied with a try of their own through full back Manihera after a superb break from the halfway line but Ademuwagun restored the advantage after a sublime offload from replacement prop Alex Pleasants. Atkinson added the extras to complete a magnificent half which saw Wasps U18s lead 43-7 at half-time.
Newcastle came back into the match with a spirited display that saw them score four second-half tries as they seeked to find a way back into the match. However, Wasps responded well to ensure there was no chance of a comeback with excellent scores from Panella and Zac Nearchou before a Greg Fisilau try completed an emphatic victory after some fantastic handling from Pichardie.
Wasps U18 deservedly recorded their fourth win of the season where they reached the 50-point mark for the third game in a row.
The win secured second place in the Northern Conference, meaning Wasps will tackle Bath Rugby U18s in the third-place play-off at Finals Day on Sunday 17 February at Allianz Park (kick-off 12pm).
Wasps U18 | 15 Tom Bacon, 14 Simone Panella, 13 Toby Baldwin, 12 Rekeiti Ma'asi White, 11 Jude Williams, 10 Charlie Atkinson, 9 Henry Mortimer; 1 Zac Nearchou, 2 Alfie Barbeary, 3 Jordan Cordice, 4 Anjo Ademuwagun, 5 Mario Pichardie Garcia, 6 Alfred Mawdsley, 7 Daniel Eckersley, 8 James Tunney (c)
Replacements | 16 Alex Pleasants, 17 James Coombs, 18 Alex Sabin, 19 Nic Jakobson, 20 Greg Fisilau, 21 Ollie Monye, 22 Evan Mitchell, 23 Tane Dunn
03m | Barbeary try 5-0
04m | Atkinson con 7-0
08m | Panella try 12-0
13m | Williams try 17-0
14m | Atkinson con 19-0
16m | Williams try 24-0
23m | Mawdsley try 29-0
24m | Atkinson con 31-0
25m | Mortimer try 36-0
32m | Manihera try 36-5
33m | Haydon-Wood con 36-7
34m | Ademuwagun try 41-7
35m | Atkinson con 43-7
41m | Obonna try 43-12
42m | Cooke con 43-14
43m | Panella try 48-14
47m | Lockwood try 48-19
48m | Cooke con 48-21
56m | Barber try 48-26
57m | Cooke con 48-28
60m | Nearchou try 53-28
61m | Atkinson con 55-28
63m | Obonna try 55-33
70m | Fisilau try 60-33
70m | Atkinson con 62-33