Howard Packman got on the score sheet for England U20 © Getty Images
Academy News Packman thanks crowd after try-scoring performance
Howard Packman thanked the crowd that turned out to support England Under-20 in their 33-9 Six Nations win over Ireland at Franklin's Gardens.
Nearly 5,000 fans were treated to a four-try performance by the England youngsters, with the Saints Senior Academy wing's score early in the second half crucial in giving his team some breathing space.
"It was really good to have the crowd getting behind us," Packman told SaintsTV. "It was nice to see a lot of people coming down to support our country and there were obviously a lot of Saints fans, too."
England had got off to a flying start, Maro Itoje's try adding to 11 points from fly half Billy Burns to build up a 16-3 lead.
But Ireland fought back to dominate the second quarter, with fly half Ross Byrne adding two penalties to his earlier effort to bring the visitors back to a score deficit going into the break.
Ireland also had the better of possession and territory in the second half, but England's defence held firm to stop wing Adam Byrne and scrum-half Nick McCarthy from close range.
Indeed England's commitment was such that Ireland were denied any more points whatsoever, and when centre Nick Tompkins and flanker Joel Conlon went over - the latter capping a man of the match performance - the effort at the other end of the pitch had been justly rewarded and a crucial win secured.
"We knew that it was a must-win game for us and that we had to put as many points on as we could if we wanted to win the Six Nations," Packman commented. "We were really focussed today and put in a good shift."
Packman played the whole 80 minutes, with fly half Sam Olver and prop Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi joining their club mate in the fray in the second half.
His try capped a memorable week which started with a two-score performance that helped the Saints Under-18s win the Premiership Rugby Academies League on Monday night, and while he admitted he was looking forward to resting up Packman also said that the hard work will continue next week adding: "I'll be trying to rest up as much as I can over the weekend, and then it's just about getting a good week of training with the Saints."
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