Wales Schools Under 18s lost their opening Centenary Shield game as they went down 2-1 to their counterparts from the Republic of Ireland in Cefn Druids last night.

The visitors scored early as skipper Cian Murphy put them ahead after eight minutes, but then Wales levelled seven minutes later through Haverfordwest County's Alaric Jones.

The Tasker Milward pupil met a corner at the back post with a firm header to bring his country level.

But the Irish struck back with what proved to be the winner, as Daryl Walsh curled in a brilliantly placed free kick.

The Welsh pressed for a leveller after the break, and alongside the accomplished Jones, another local player in Hakin United's Jack Wilson also impressed as he came on for the final 40 minutes.

However, the Irish held on, meaning Wales will be looking to bounce back in their next shield game against Northern Ireland Schools in Belfast on March 15th.

Unfortunately injury prevented Wilson's team mate at The Vikings and Pembrokeshire College Ben Fawcett from also playing, but he was still there as part of the squad at the Rock Stadium and will be expected to feature in Northern Ireland if fit.