AIG MJAAs learn tough lesson in 0-97 loss to South Africa at Junior World Championships

AIG MJAAs learn tough lesson in 0-97 loss to South Africa at Junior World Championships

LA ROCHE-SUR-YON, France – Last year, the USA Rugby AIG Men’s Junior All-Americans won the 2012 IRB Junior World Trophy, earning a spot in the 2013 Junior World Championship. In their first match Wednesday, the MJAAs went up against South Africa, last year’s champions, and fell 0-97.

It only took two minutes for the title holders to get on the board, and within 15 minutes South Africa had a 15-0 lead. Cheslin Kolbe, fullback for Super Rugby’s Stormers in South Africa, gave the MJAAs an early taste by taking a kick from nearly his own try zone to the MJAAs’ 22 before offloading to a teammate for a try.

Much of the match followed the same pattern, with poor tackling from the MJAAs contributing to South Africa’s insurmountable lead. The Springboks went into the dressing room at halftime up 54-0 before coming out and putting another 43 points on the board in the second half.

Head Coach Jason Kelly made an early substitution in the first half and allowed others to get action in the second half, even though the opening Pool A match was out of reach.

"It was a tough day," Kelly said. "We're very disappointed with the overall performance."

The MJAAs can look ahead to facing host France and England in the next week.

Universal Sports has added all USA Rugby AIG Junior All-American matches and the Final for the IRB Junior World Championships to its list of rugby programming in June. The schedule below includes both live streaming of the matches on, as well as broadcast same-day-delay of the match on Universal Sports’ cable channel.

Follow @aarugby on Twitter for updates from France and watch the MJAAs' matches on the IRB Junior World Championship website.

Sunday, June 9
France vs. MJAAs
Kickoff – 12:45 P.M. ET
Broadcast time – 9:00 P.M. ET

Thursday, June 13
England vs. MJAAs
Kickoff – 12:45 P.M. ET
Broadcast time – 10:00 P.M. ET

Sunday, June 23
Kickoff – 12:45 P.M. ET
Broadcast time – 9:00 P.M. ET

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Comments (14)

  • Guest - Sam

    Good one Kelly! Rally the troops again for the next battle. You and Rob should resign after the JRWC.

  • Guest - Robin

    Now there is a really really smart comment lost to one of the best rugby playing nations in the world and current title holders......... so coaches must
    spectacularly Disingenuous. You must be one of the great rugby brains of the world

  • Guest - Rachel

    France's game against England was nothing to brag about either, hope our boys can put this match behind them and give the home team a run for their money.

  • Guest - MJAA?

    Take a look at the rosters on, note the club affiliations and size/weight.
    We are running college frosh/sophs up against contracted Super Rugby professionals. They'd beat the Eagles most likely. Is this a good idea or a good use of time and money? We're 10+ years away from that level. They'd be better taking a tour of well, anywhere. This is sending a D-III football school to the NFL and seeing what happens. poor judgement to send them.

  • Guest - Hooch

    In reply to: Guest - MJAA?

    They earned that spot by winning the trophy last year. If they can't compete the will be relegated. I say give them their chance. We have to start competing against the best sometime. Might as well be now. As long as they don't get discouraged then I say its good for them to experience this level of play. It will help them if they want to play for the eagles

  • Guest - Bill Carter

    Heads up boys if you want to beat the best you have to play the best. The leasons you learn at this level is invaluable. Train hard and come back bigger and stronger.

  • Guest - steve

    Tackling was horrible my guess is that is has been bad since the start of the season but were selected anyway knowing that, that sort of weakness would always be exposed. 9 Players from one club went to the trials 6 were selected hmmmmm.! I am with Sam, lot of this falls at the selectors footsteps. Lets hope they can get the tackling in order for the next game or the same score is quite possible.

  • Guest - Sam

    In reply to: Guest - steve

    Steve! We need to develop this great game free of politics and what not. I was actually following this build up quiet while. We knew from a year ago that we up against tier 1 nations this year but the national U20 begun their campaign only 3 or 2 months ago, unexeceptable. Another aspect/s was a few of these players they took with them I believed were still under a cloud because of their injuries but they still took them on board, I guess because of their reputation they were able to make the cut. Lastly, I remembered there were 4 or 3 Fijian nationals in the squad that gathered in L.Vagas, really good finisher but none of them make it. I hope it wouldn't stop them from trying the senior team because they were really good but can improve on a few things here and there. I happened to bump into one of the guy in Philadelaphia during the CRC'S, really surprised to see him there as I thought he would be in camp with U20, he was even invited to the USA/Canada match in Minnesota. Go EAGLES!!!!

  • Guest - R105

    Where is Paogofie Buyten for the USA? He is a big hitter no8 for LU and had a great test against Canada.

  • Guest - Henning

    As a South African, I want to say that I honestly hope the USA gets their act together with rugby. There is just too much talent in a country the size of yours, and i just can not understand why you guys cant be more competitive. Yes yes, i know NFL has all the money, and you also compete against other sports...but that is no excuse, the Aussies has Rugby Union only as the 3rd or 4th biggest sport, and yet they are world class. Anyway, the Saffas, Aussies and New Zealanders are tired of only having each other as serious competitors, and we all would LOVE to see the States become a rugby giant!

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