We turn our attention to the four teams in Pool B at the World Rugby U20 Championship 2017, which features 2016 runners-up England, Scotland, Italy and Argentina.



Seeding for 2018: 2
Best finish: Champions (2013, 2014, 2016)
Worst finish: Eighth (2012)
U20 Championship match record: Played 50 / Won 39 / Lost 11
U20 Championship points/tries scored: 1,674 / 210

U20 graduates: 38
Most capped U20 graduate: Ben Youngs (76 tests, including two for the British and Irish Lions)

Did you know...? England have reached more U20 Championship finals than any other team with eight, one more than six-time champions New Zealand.

Coach: Steve Bates
Captain: Ben Curry

One to watch: Marcus Smith (pictured)
Named the Rugby Players’ Association Young Player of the Year after a stunning season in the English Premiership. Smith scored 199 points in 28 appearances for a struggling Harlequins team with his silky skills and elusive running style leaving countless opponents trailing in his wake. The teenager was also included in Eddie Jones’ England training squad for the November internationals, Six Nations and the end-of-season Barbarians fixture as well as being nominated for BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year.


Seeding for 2018: 5
Best finish: Fifth (2017)
Worst finish: 10th (2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014)
U20 match record: Played 50 / Won 20 / Lost 30
U20 points/tries scored: 999 / 134

U20 graduates: 42
Most capped U20 graduate: Richie Gray (66 tests, including one for the British and Irish Lions)

Did you know...? Scotland’s Jamie Farndale was the leading try-scorer at the 2012 U20 Championship in South Africa, despite his side finishing ninth.

Scotland’s U20’s head coach, Bryan Redpath, previously captained Scotland for 26 of his 60 caps, part taking in 3 RWC (1995, 1999, 2003). He was also part of the last team to lift the Five Nations Championship trophy in 1999.

Coach: Bryan Redpath
Captain: Stafford McDowall

One to watch: Guy Graham
The flanker will team up with his brother Gary at Newcastle next season after impressing during the first three rounds of the U20 Six Nations and throughout the season with club side Hawick. Both players are the son of George Graham, the 25-times capped Scotland prop. Toughness runs in the family genes and Guy is no exception with his tireless work-rate marking him out as one to watch. He scored two tries against France in the Six Nations and was a member of the side that beat England before injury ruled him out of the final two games of the Championship.


Seeding for 2018: 8
Best finish: Eighth (2017)
Worst finish: 13th (2009 – last year of 16 teams)

U20 Championship match record: Played 40 / Won 10 / Lost 30
U20 Championship points / tries scored: 630 / 74

U20 graduates: 49 (42 from Championship and seven from Trophy)
Most capped U20 graduate: Edoardo Gori (68 tests)

Did you know...? Italy recorded a top-eight finish for the first time in 2017, having avoided relegation to the U20 Trophy on the final day of the three previous tournaments

Coach: Fabio Roselli
Captain: Michele Lamaro

One to watch: Antonio Rizzi
Rizzi first broke into the Azzurrini set-up as an 18-year-old during the 2016 U20 Six Nations and quickly developed into the heartbeat of the team. To date, he has scored 87 points in 17 appearances at this level. As a tactical kicker the Petrarca playmaker has been compared to some of the best in the business but his game includes plenty of panache as well as pragmatism with his offloading ability and penchant for beating defenders marking him out as the sort of attacking threat Italy’s senior side has craved for many a year at 10.


Seeding for 2018: 11
Best finish: Third (2016)
Worst finish: 11th (2009, 2017)
U20 match record: Played 50 / Won 25 / Lost 25
U20 points/tries scored: 1,129 / 130

U20 graduates: 58
Most capped U20 graduate: Martín Landajo (78 tests)

Did you know...? Argentina have seen the most players graduate from the U20 Championship to the test arena, including Nicolás Sánchez, Martín Landajo and Tomás Cubelli who have all played more than 60 tests for Los Pumas

Coach: Jose Pellicena
Captain: Joaquin de la Vega

One to watch: Juan Bautista Daireaux
Gave a glimpse of his potential at last year’s Championship when he scored twice against France – his only start in six appearances in Georgia. Twelve months on, Daireaux is set to play a much more prominent role after getting plenty of senior rugby experience with Newman, one of the top clubs in Buenos Aires. A big, strong fly-half who reads the game well, Daireaux has all the attributes to go all the way in the game and is expected to make the transition up the international ranks quickly.

Who do you think will rise the top of Pool B or spring a surprise along the way? Join the conversation @WorldRugby using #WorldRugbyU20s.