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CLARE DUO, Tony Butler and Ethan Coughlan are part of the Irish U20 rugby squad currently competing in the 6 Nations summer-series.

On Saturday, Richie Murphy’s side lost to France 42-21 in Verona in their summer series opening outing. With the score at 17-0 inside 20 minutes, Ireland had conceded more points in the opening quarter than they did in the entirety of their last meeting with Les Bleulets.

Doora/Barefield’s Coughlan and Butler, both formerly of the Ennis RFC underage ranks, formed an out-half partnership for the France game.

Scrum half Coughlan’s smart thinking led to a sharp pass sending right wing, Aitzol King over for their first try which was duly converted by Butler.

Neither Tony or Ethan were included in the squad for Wednesday’s meeting with South Africa but they’ll be hopeful of returning to action for Tuesday’s final pool game against England.

Ahead of the World Rugby U20 championship’s return next year, the decision was made to hold the summer series to support the pathway of developing players. Supported by World Rugby, and involving each of the Six Nations Rugby Unions, South Africa, and Georgia, the Under-20 Summer Series is made up of two pools, three rounds and will end with cross-pool matches. Ireland are drawn in Pool A alongside England, South Africa and France, with matches held at the Payanini Centre in Verona.

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