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The eleventh U20 tournament begins today in southwest France with six-matches being contested in three venues. Twelve nations will compete as New Zealand defend their 2017 title in this annual event that showcases the players of tomorrow. The junior All Blacks soundly defeated England 64-17 in the final held in Georgia last year.
Returning to the U20 contest are Japan, which won the U20 Trophy Championship last year. Samoa finished last in 2017 and were relegated to the 2018 U20 Trophy round.
The USA have participated in the U20 event only twice, 2008 (16th) and 2012 (12th). The Eagles have not qualified for the U20 Trophy Championship in the past two-years.
A total of thirty matches will be played in three pools of four teams each to determine the twelve slots. The top four teams based on winning points will advance into the semi-final round. Whoever ends in twelfth place will go down in 2019.
Matches May 30
Venue Team Team Stadium
Narbonne England Argentina Stade D'Honneur
Narbonne New Zealand Japan Stade D'Honneur
Beziers Scotland Italy Stade de la Méditerranée
Beziers Australia Wales Stade de la Méditerranée
Perpignon South Africa Georgia Stade de la Aimé Giral
Perpignon France Ireland Stade de la Aimé Giral
The next round is scheduled for June 3.