UL Bohemians' Martin McPhail proved he has a bright future ahead of him when the winger touched down twice during Ireland's IRB U21 World Cup 5th/6th place play-off against France in Ellis Stadium
UL Bohemians' Martin McPhail proved he has a bright future ahead of him when the winger touched down twice during Ireland's IRB U21 World Cup 5th/6th place play-off against France in Ellis Stadium, Johannesburg at the weekend. In what has been a mixed tournament for Ireland's young guns, Munster can at least take pride in the performances of its players, particularly in the backs, where Scott Young and Conrad O' Sullivan of UCC and of course McPhail all proved they will be capable of playing senior provincial rugby in the not too distant future. But the highlight for McPhail -who will play in the AIL Division One next season - will surely be the match against France - the current U21 Six Nation champions. The right-winger scored tries in the 4th and 22nd minutes as Ireland ran the French ragged in a scintillating first half performance. At half-time Ireland lead 26-7, but the French, having got a severe dressing-down from coach Phillipe Bohe,r served up a splendid second half revival to finally run out 40-29 winners. But coach Ciaran Fitzgerald was pleased with their final placing in a tournament which South Africa won beating Australia 24-21 in the final: "We'll take sixth, but finishing fifth would have been a bonus. We are happy with our final position. Overall this tournament has been great, and a quality examination for the players. Playing five games in two weeks allowed us to see how they cope with the pressure of high level rugby. On that account, it was a very positive tournament for us."