London - Hosts Italy take on South Africa
and current champions England play Japan on the first day of next year's World
Rugby Under-20 Championship.
The match schedule and kick-off times for
next year’s World Rugby Under-20 Championship (formerly IRB Junior World
Championship) have been announced.
South Africa will feature in Pool B alongside
the hosts, Australia and Samoa.
The tournament, which runs from 2-20 June,
2015 in northern Italy, sees England returning to defend their crown which they
retained in June in New Zealand after winning the tournament for the first time
in 2013, beating South Africa in the final.
Four venues will host the Under20
Championship next year - Parma, Calvisano, Viadana with the final held in
Cremona on 20 June.
The opening day sees hosts Italy take on
South Africa, England play Japan, who return to the Under-20 competition for
the first time since 2009 and four-time winners New Zealand v Scotland in
Parma. As in previous years, six matches will be played on each match day, and
this year kick-off times are set for 16:30, 18:30 and 20:30 (local time).
“It’s great to be bringing the World Rugby U20
Championship back to Italy after they hosted such a successful tournament in
2011. The fixture list has some great matches that will showcase the future
stars of world rugby during a very important year for the game,” said World
Rugby Chairperson Bernard Lapasset.
“More than 300 players have made the step
up from the Under-20 Championship to the international Test arena since 2008
and I have no doubt there will be further players graduating up the ranks after
FIR tournament director Tullio Rosolen said:
"We are confident this is an exciting schedule.”
"New Zealand will play a match in each
of the venues, England will be divided between Calvisano and Viadana, South
Africa will be in Calvisano and Parma as well as the Italian Under-20 team, so
the main contenders for the title as well as the national team will ensure fans
in the region get to see the future stars of world rugby in action.
International stars such as Aaron Cruden
and Julia Savea from New Zealand, Australian Quade Cooper, France centre
Mathieu Bastareaud, Ireland scrumhalf Conor Murray, England backs George Ford
and Owen Farrell and Springbok flyhalf Handré Pollard are just some of the
players to graduate from the Under-20 Championship to international Test level.
Italy centre Luca Morisi, who also represented his country at Under-20 level,
is ambassador for the tournament in Italy next year.
England, France, Japan, Wales
South Africa, Italy, Australia,
New Zealand, Ireland, Argentina,