NZU20 defeat Samoa in opening JWC match

James Mortimer     05 Jun 2012    

The Baby Blacks, defending champions and top ranked team, lay down a massive marker for other teams at Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch, with Bryn Hall's outfit running in five tries in the first half and a further five in the second.

Wing Milford Keresoma scored three tries, while fellow wing Ambrose Curtis and fullback Martin McKenzie recorded doubles.

It was an ideal start for coaches Rob Penney, Chris Boyd and Scott McLeod.

New Zealand will face Wales next on June 8, before rounding out pool play with a match against another Pacific Island opponent in Fiji on June 12.

The defending champions weren't the only big guns running riot on the opening day, with the action at the University of Western Cape Stadium in Cape Town impressing.

Last season's beaten runners-up and Under-20 Six Nations champions England defeated Italy 64-5, while Australia accounted for Scotland 67-12.

The hosts suffered a massive upset, losing 23-19 to Ireland.

Penney reflected on the opening win.

"I’m pretty happy with it," he said.

"We probably didn’t look after the ball as well as we would have liked, we turned over a little bit of possession when we had opportunities and some of our execution wasn’t as clinical as we would like."
"But you've got to give credit to the Samoa boys also who came out and hit us pretty hard on occasion and put us under a bit of pressure, so all in all reasonably satisfied."