England edge France to win women's Six Nations
England and France are in the same group in next year’s Covid-19 delayed Women’s Rugby World Cup in New Zealand
Champions England beat France 10-6 in the women’s Six Nations final at the Twickenham Stoop on Saturday.
Home No.8 Poppy Cleall scored the only try of the match as they won a third successive Six Nations title in what was their eighth successive victory over France.
The Red Roses were only 7-6 ahead with barely a minute left on the clock when Emily Scarratt sealed victory with a penalty.
England and France are in the same group in next year’s Covid-19 delayed Women’s Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.
The coronavirus pandemic meant that instead of all six teams playing each other, they were split into two pools of three.
England and France, long the two leading women’s teams in Europe, topped their respective groups to win through to the final.
France had the upper hand at the scrum in the early stages but were unable to make their set-piece and territorial dominance count.
But England captain Scarratt missed two early penalty chances, including a relatively simple chance from close range, and the match was still deadlocked at 0-0 after 20 minutes.
The centre left the field soon afterwards for what appeared to be a head injury assessment.
France had a try disallowed for a forward pass and from the ensuing penalty, fly-half Caroline Drouin saw her kick fade away in the breeze.
But the final minute before the break saw England lead 7-0.
Cleall powered away from a scrum and then, after a ruck near the opposition line, she forced her way over for a try. Scarratt, back on the field, converted.
France then forced a scrum penalty early in the second half but Drouin was off target again.
Moments later, England infringed again and this time Drouin kicked a penalty to reduce the hosts’ lead to 7-3.
Both sides, who had overwhelmed their previous opponents this tournament, made several basic handling errors as the match headed into the final quarter.
Cleall went off injured and with some 10 minutes left, France kicked a penalty to touch for an attacking line-out.
But substitute Sarah Hunter, England’s regular captain, then helped force a turnover.
France, however, with seven minutes left won a kickable penalty and Drouin’s kick went in off the post to reduce England’s lead to just one point but Scarratt’s effort made sure of the title.
Earlier on Monday, the match between KKR and RCB was postponed after... READ MORE
SRH lost five of their first six games under Warner, who led them to... READ MORE
This year's Roland Garros has already been pushed back by one week... READ MORE
A massive surge in Covid-19 cases has placed a huge strain on India's ... READ MORE
The announcement quoted Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Human... READ MORE
India recorded a new record of 414,188 confirmed cases in the past 24 ... READ MORE
Morrison stood by his decision to impose a biosecurity order barring... READ MORE
Sharjah's first female car mechanic Huda Al Matroushi on battling... READ MORE