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Smith last action hero for Wales U20s

23/02/2019

Wales Under 20 refused to be over-run by England and conjured up an 81st minute try to win 11-10 against all the odds – with Dragons Academy ace Deon Smith the last action winner!

Replacement wing Smith – who was joined by eight Dragons in the match day squad - crashed through England full back Josh Hodge in the last move of the match to score the matchwinning try after England had retaken the lead 10 minutes earlier with the first try of the match.

At that stage it looked as though it would be the visitors who would come through to back up their recent 31-19 home win over world champions France. But true Welsh grit shone through in the end with skipper Dewi Lake, man of the match Jac Morgan and Dragons back row man Lennon Greggains leading by example.

With only two minutes left on the clock, Wales coach Gareth Williams changed both his outside half Cai Evans, who had kicked two penalties to give his side the lead, and Lake. At that was at a time when Wales had a penalty on half-way.

It was a bold move, but it paid rich dividends. Costeloe found touch, Griffiths hit his man at the line-out and Wales moved in for the kill. They didn't find an initial chink in the English defence, but when centre Connor Doherty came through a ruck illegally to take out Welsh scrum half Dan Babos it gave Wales one final shot at glory.

Once again Costeloe kicked for the corner, Griffiths found the target and the forwards drove for the line. When tey were held up near the posts, Babos fired the ball left to Costeloe, who picked out Smith on a deep, supporting line off his wing and the rising Dragons star sped for the line.

He crashed into and over Hodge before touching down in the left corner to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat with the clock deep into the red and showing 81 minutes. It mattered little that Costleoe pushed his conversion attempt wide, Wales had twice come from behind to win 11-10.

Dragons scrum half Dafydd Buckland had started his first game of the competition, after two appearances as a replacement, while Ed Scragg, Lennon Greggains and Aneurin Owen all started the game too. Dragons teammates Dan Babos and Max Ayling joined the substitutes bench.

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