Friday, March 06, 2020

By Kieran Murphy

TULLOW and Ireland under-20 prop Charlie Ward maintains there is more to come from the national team which has achieved bonus-point wins in their three games so far against Scotland, Wales and England in the Under-20 Six Nations Championship.

Ward played a major part in Ireland’s recent victory against England at Franklin’s Gardens with Ireland’s win as emphatic as the 39-21 scoreline suggests. Ward came on in place of loose-head prop Marcus Hanan on 56 minutes.

The Tullow front rower is of immense value to the entire front three as he is able to adapt to the challenge of both prop positions.

“I would be able to come on for Tom Clarkson at tight head if he is knackered at the end of the game. It is helpful to be able to come in on either side,” acknowledged Charlie.

There is no Triple Crown silverware at Under-20s level, just the achievement of winning all three games was good enough for the players as they celebrated victory.

“At under-20 there is no trophy but we still count it as having won a Triple Crown,” says Charlie.

More to the point it was the performance which counted for the players while they have ambitions to go even higher.

“We feel there is more in us as well. There is a good bit to go and we can play better but that was a start. There were bits in the second half where we dropped off in all three games. If we clear that up we would be in a good position.”

With the next fixture against Italy cancelled due to the Corona virus and the upcoming France fixture also in doubt, Charlie is unsure when the championship will get back up and running, but the Tullow man will certainly be ready when called.

There has been an added bonus for Charlie in recent weeks as he was called in to train with the Irish senior squad.

I was down in Cork two weeks ago in an open session. It was a good experience,” he said.

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