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Rugby - 27. February 2011.

England defeat Italy 16-3 today at Worcester Stadium

England 16 France 3

England Women remain on track to retain their RBS 6 Nations title after a
hard fought 16-3 victory over of France at Worcester’s Sixways Stadium
on Sunday.

The game might not have been the performance England Head Coach Gary Street
was looking for but certainly the result ticked the right box as England
look to secure a sixth successive title and another Grand Slam.

Tries for England hooker Amy Garnett and skipper Katy McLean sealed the
victory but England had to wait for them with both touchdowns in the last
quarter of the game. Nevertheless, the reigning champions had looked in
control for much of the game, but their downfull was not being able to turn
possession into points.

Street, whose side is now the only unbeaten team in the Six Nations, said:
“We were very sporadic today and we managed to squander quite a few
opportunities. It was frustrating because we got ourselves into some good
positions but we missed the try scoring opportunities. We lacked precision
at times and that was disappointing.

“There’s lots for us to work on but the important thing is that
we are still on track. We have now got a good focus for our game against
Scotland and we know where the improvements need to be made.”

England looked dangerous from the off, but the tone they soon set for
themselves followed them for much of the match. After just two minutes
skipper McLean made a great break, catching France on the hop, but the
tourists swarmed around England and dashed their try scoring hopes.

Worcester’s Danielle Waterman and Lichfield’s Emily Scarratt
also came close in the opening quarter but France held firm while England
paid for their errors in the final stages of their attacking play.

France had the first opportunity to put points on the board with a penalty
after 26 minutes but Sandrine Agricole couldn’t convert. A second
attempt, with Nadge Casenave taking over the kicking duties, was more
successful and France took a 3-0 lead after 26 minutes.

McLean too had her chance at goal, missing a 35th minute effort but she
made amends to equalise just minutes into injury time.

The Darlington Mowden Park Sharks fly half was back in action soon after
the restart with a 49th minute shot at goal, and with the kick being
successful England took a 6-3 lead.

England rang the changes on the pitch and replacements Garnett, Rachael
Burford and Catherine Spence made an immediate impression. Burford came
close to scoring, but again France’s defence held firm. Again, the
chances were there for England but the rugby world cup finalists
couldn’t finish off the opportunities.

England’s continuous pressure did pay off eventually though with
Saracens’ hooker Garnett picking up from the back of a ruck and
barging her way over the try line. McLean missed the penalty but England led
11-3 after 72 minutes.

McLean then rounded off proceedings for England with an injury time try. A
ruck in the midfield saw England spin the ball out to the right wing and
McLean found space to score the final touchdown. Again, she couldn’t
make the conversion but 16-3 was enough to seal the win for England.

England:

15       
Danielle        
Waterman     (Worcester), 14 Katherine Merchant
(Worcester), 13   Emily  Scarratt (Lichfield),
12           
Kimberley      Oliver  (Bristol), 11 Francesca
Matthews (Richmond), 10         Katy
            Mclean
(C) (Darlington Mowden Park Sharks), 9 La Toya Mason (Wasps), 1 Rochelle
Clark (Worcester), 2 Emma  Croker (Richmond),
3     
Sophie           Hemming
(Bristol), 4 Rebecca      Essex (Richmond), 5
Joanna  McGilchrist (Wasps),6  
Heather         
Fisher(Worcester), 7 Margaret      Alphonsi (vc)
(Saracens), 8 Sarah     Hunter (Lichfield).
Replacements: 16      Amy   
Garnett          
(Saracens),
17           
Rosemarie Crowley (Lichfield), 18   
Rowena        
Burnfield       (Richmond),
19        Catherine Spencer (Bristol),
20           
Georgina      
Rozario          (Lichfield),
21            Rachael
Burford (Richmond), 22       
Georgina      
Roberts          (Darlington
Mowden Park Sharks).

Tries: Garnett, McLean

Conversions:

Penalties: McLean (2)

Replacements: Roberts for Matthews (8, blood, reversed 20), Burford for
Oliver (HT), Garnett for Croker (50), Spencer for Fisher (57), Burnfield for
McGilchrist (64), Crowley for Hemming (62).  

France

15        LADAGNOUS CAROLINE, 14 AGUERRE
DIONI, 13   POUBLAN ELODIE, 12 AGRICOLE  SANDRINE, 11
RAMKILAOUN SABRINA, 10 CASENAVE NADEGE, 9 YAHE  MARIE ALICE (C), 1
EZANNO HELENE, 2 MIGNOT GAËLLE, 3 CHOBET CHRISTELLE, 4 DE NADAÏ
MARINE, 5 BOUISSET CYRIELLE,
6           
DJOSSOUVI  KOUMIBA,
8            BA
AÏDA, 7    HEBEL MARIE CHARLOTTE. Replacements:
16   NOGUERA AUDREY, 17 BARTHELEMY CELINE, 18 RABIER SANDRA,
19      ANDRE MANON, 20 TRONCY JENNYFER, 21 SOBOLAK
AURORE, 22 HEGUY CELINE.

Tries:

Conversions:

Penalties: Casenave

 

Half time score: England 3 France 3

Referee: Wayne Davies

Assistant Referees: Brian Ravenhill & Debbie Innes
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