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Women’s Six Nations: Round Four Wrap

Women’s Six Nations: Round Four Wrap


France took a decisive step towards winning the 2018 Women’s Six Nations thanks to Jessy Trémoulière’s late try against England in front of a world record attendance on Friday night.

France took a decisive step towards winning the 2018 Women’s Six Nations thanks to Jessy Trémoulière’s late try against England in front of a world record attendance on Friday night.

On Saturday and Sunday, two other close games saw Scotland and Italy record their first wins of the Championship, beating Ireland and Wales respectively.

France 18-17 England
Stade des Alpes, Grenoble

A world record attendance for a women’s rugby match of 17,440 spectators watched what may turn out to be the deciding game in this year’s Championship.

England took the lead when Abby Dow scored after eight minutes, but France responded with tries from
Trémoulière and Caroline Drouin to lead at half-time.

A second try for England, this time from Amy Cokayne, followed by a Katy Daley-McLean penalty gave the visitors a four-point lead going into the final stages.

But Trémoulière held off one tackle to score in the corner and give France a shot at the Grand Slam on Friday against Wales.

England second row Tamara Taylor, who became her country’s second most-capped player, spoke of the experience in front of the Grenoble crowd.

She said: “It’s amazing to play in France.

“The crowd were very, very loud and it’s a really good experience for girls like me who have played over here a couple of times, but especially for the new girls.

“This is what women’s rugby could and should be like every single game.”

On winning her 115th cap, she said: “To be honest I would get rid of that and beat France in France any day of the week.

“I’m pretty gutted at the moment about the result, but once I get over that then I’ll have a chance to think about that.”

Wales 15-22 Italy
Principality Stadium

Michela Sillari’s last-minute try gave Italy a bonus-point win in Cardiff, to put them level on points with Wales and Scotland with one round of fixtures remaining.

The Azzurre took the lead after eight minutes through Isabella Locatelli, cutting inside to score under the posts.

A Robyn Wilkins penalty and Alisha Butchers try put the hosts ahead, but in the closing moments of the first half, Maria Magatti went over to make it 12-8 at the break.

Beatrice Rigoni made it more comfortable for Italy, but a Sioned Harries try 11 minutes from time set up a tense finish until Sillari made sure of the victory at the death.

Wales second row Siwan Lillicrap said: “Obviously we’re bitterly disappointed and gutted.

“It was a great opportunity for us to play at our national stadium, the Principality.

“It’s a great occasion and we’ve been building towards this.

“There were opportunities we could have taken that we didn’t, but we’re in a development stage, we’re changing quite a bit.

“We’re creating opportunities, it’s just a case of getting over the whitewash now and taking those opportunities when we get them and I think you’ll see that against France, we’ll be looking to cause an upset there.”

Ireland 12-15 Scotland
Donnybrook, Dublin

Scotland also recorded their first win of the Championship with a well-earned victory over Ireland at Donnybrook.
In a tense and low-scoring first half, Helen Nelson’s penalty for the visitors was the difference between the two sides.

Nelson went over two minutes after the break before Ireland closed to within a point with a penalty try, the result of Ireland’s dominant presence at the scrum.

The hosts continued to pressurise the Scotland defence, but the crucial moment came when Chloe Rollie intercepted a wayward pass in her own 22 and scored at the other end.

Paula Fitzpatrick pulled Ireland back into the game once more, but Scotland held out for a crucial win.

Irish flanker Claire Molloy said: “We came up against a tough Scottish side who are physical and we were outmatched.

“Our execution really let us down.

“We thought we built on it from France and Italy and obviously last time out against Wales we were nailing it, but today it just didn’t happen, our skills let us down.”