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|U20 Fixtures and Results
|U21 Fixtures & Results|
Drop Goals: Paddy Jackson, Luke McGrath
Drop Goal: Sam Davies
Ulster fly-half Paddy Jackson had an off-night with the boot, missing four kicks at goal, but he marshalled his troops well and pinned the Welsh back to give Ireland a deserved victory.
Full-back Shane Layden threatened time and again for the men in green, and it was his first-half try which proved to be the difference between the two sides.
Wales did manage to edge their way back into it, but in the end drop goals from Jackson and replacement scrum-half Luke McGrath got Ireland off to a winning start.
Despite playing into a strong wind the home side dominated the opening half, securing several turnovers, and that dominance told as Layden scored the game's only try.
Promising Munster centre JJ Hanrahan was the creator, floating a long pass out wide to Buccaneers full-back Layden who dived over to open the scoring.
Fly-half Sam Davies got Wales back into it with a drop goal as the visitors trailed only 5-3 at the break despite being under immense pressure in the first half.
Having been under the cosh for the majority of the opening period the Welsh found their feet after the break and after the two sides had cancelled each other out for 25 minutes, the Welsh took the lead as replacement Lewis Williams slotted a penalty from 30 metres out.
That seemed to spark the Irish into life and after Jackson had missed a penalty opportunity for a Welsh infringement at the following kick-off, the Ulster fly-half finally slotted his first kick of the night.
With the Irish attacking on the Welsh 22, the young outside half knocked over a drop goal to put the Irish back in front 8-6 with just over ten minutes to go.
And Jackson followed that up with some impressive kicking for territory, and with visiting full-back Ross Jones' clearance kick deflected by his own man, a snap drop goal from McGrath stretched the lead to six to put the game beyond the Welsh.
The visitors looked for the try which would have got them back into it, and livewire flanker Daniel Thomas mounted a spirited attack but yet another knock on put paid to their hopes ahead of a clash with Scotland next week.