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Young blasts beaten Wasps

Director of rugby Dai Young slammed his Wasps side after they lost 30-29 at home to Newport Gwent Dragons in the LV= Cup.

Despite scoring four tries to the Welsh region's two, Wasps had victory snatched away as 21-year-old visiting fly-half Steffon Jones crowned a 20-point kicking display with the winning penalty in the final minute after home full-back Hugo Southwell was yellow-carded for blatantly obstructing Dragons winger Ifan Evans.

"I didn't think we deserved it," admitted Young. "We played a team that didn't have the quality in their side that we've got but they were far hungrier. Defence is normally one of the strongest points of our performances but it was extremely poor."

He added: "We scored four tries and blew one or two more but you have got to defend - and we didn't defend with the same vigour and intensity we have all season. We gave away some penalties and the two tries they scored were well taken by them, but poor from us."

Young added: "I'm not a very good loser and I'm disappointed. We put a strongish team out to try and build up a togetherness between us and the supporters here and we let the fans down and ourselves down."

Dragons coach Danny Wilson, by contrast, praised a young side without five stars on World Cup duty and another six first-teamers through injury. Wilson said: "We held on in there. We'd talked about controlling possession and after a reasonably good first half, we found ourselves under the cosh a little bit.

"We had 11 boys under the age of 23 in our 23-man squad and Wasps put on a very strong bench that put us under pressure. But the character of our players - young and experienced - was fantastic. To get an away win like this against an English Premiership side is superb."

Hallam Amos - at 17 years and 28 days - became the youngest Welsh player to appear in regional rugby when he started at full-back and Jack Dixon - 16 years and 333 days - took that record from him when he appeared as a temporary blood replacement for the final seven minutes of the first half.

Amos crowned a mature display with his 31st-minute try and Wilson said: "The way he finished the try and, for a 17-year-old, the way he came out with that much composure was excellent. Imagine the confidence he will take from this game.

"That's what it's about. We played a few younger players than we have done in the past. We saw the World Cup with Wales and how they took that approach and the benefits you can get from it. These boys have come through the Academy system at the Dragons and it isn't just a case of dropping them in. We believed they were good enough and physically able to do it and they proved that."


From Belfast Telegraph