Ireland U20s recovered from a shaky start and managed to survive against 14-man Italy to breathe life back into their Six Nations campaign.
In an entertaining 38–34 defeat, Italy U20s fought until the very end, despite being reduced to a man down early in the game.
Ireland scored five tries in the opening 40 minutes to lead by 31-15 at the interval. However, despite some amazing attacking play produced by the two teams, the half will be remembered for an ugly incident.
In the ninth minute, the task for Ireland U20s looked quite easier in theory, after Italian Jacopo Bianchi saw the red card for a tackle you would probably see in the WWE.
At 5-5, the game in Donnybrook looked evenly poised, when flanker Bianchi was sent off for the crazy tackle on Jack Dunne.
Bianchi managed to tip Dunne, not only beyond the horizontal, but beyond the vertical again.
Dunne was actually lucky to go beyond 180 degrees, avoiding landing on his head and suffering a serious injury.
With the referee Dan Jones immediately calling a halt to play, a quick consultation with the TMO confirmed what looked immediately like a red-card action. He was left with no choice but to send off the Italian for the outrageous spear tackle.
You can see it below.
Thankfully, Dunne did not suffer a serious injury and after spending some time lying on the pitch being observed by the medicals, he was able to continue.
As of 10 minutes later, Ireland made the difference in numbers count, leading 26-5.
Despite having that one-man advantage for the 70 minutes remaining, though, Ireland were outscored 19-7 after the break.
At the end, every point was crucial for Ireland U20s as Italy battled to an entertaining 38–34 defeat.
In spite of the difficult situation that Jacopo Bianchi put them in, brave Italy earned two bonus points in their loss.