Vass pays tribute to England effort after victory

England U20 head coach Ian Vass paid tribute to his side for their hard work and desire after their second bonus-point victory of the World Rugby U20 Championship in Georgia.

Vass’ side sealed a 34-22 win over Wales in what was a hard-fought, physical encounter against their opponents.

England next face Australia in their final pool game of the Championship as the look to progress through to the semi-finals of the competition.

“Overall you have to be pleased with a bonus-point victory,” said Vass.

“I thought our boys worked really, really hard and we had some purple patches where we played some really good stuff and we had some periods where we defended really well.

“There probably wasn’t a flow to the game and it wasn’t the best looking game but in these pool stages it’s all about getting through them.”

Gabriel Ibitoye continued his fine tournament with two more tries, taking his tally to four and was one of many stand out performers for England.

Max Malins steered the side superbly while Ben Earl was at his destructive best and Theo Brophy Clews made an impressive return from injury.

“I was really pleased for Gabs because he did some of the really simple things well, finished tries, made breaks, caught high balls," said Vass. "When he does that he is an excellent player and a great asset.

“Max has played at this level for a year or two now and we need him to play there. There are others to be mentioned as well; Ben Earl was great at seven and some of the work rate from Theo in the middle in what was his first game back was outstanding, He chased down kicks he had no right to chase down.

He added: “If everything doesn’t work really fluently it can just come down to who chases and works hardest and that’s really what got us through in the end.”

England now move on to Australia and Vass is expecting another stern test on Thursday.

“We are under no illusions that it’s going to be anything other than tough,” he said. “We need to rest up, won’t spend too much time on the field and will turn our focus to the challenge they pose.”