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Bern: Record crowd was so big I couldn’t find my mum!

Bern: Record crowd was so big I couldn’t find my mum!

England front-rower Sarah Bern hailed the record 10,974 crowd for pushing the defending Women’s Six Nations Grand Slam champions to an impressive 66-7 win over Wales at the Stoop.

Ahead of the Round 4 clash in the English capital, there had been hopes the attendance would surpass the 10,545 at Exeter’s Sandy Park in 2019, and the Red Roses faithful duly turned out in their droves to set a new record for an England Women’s ticketed home game outside of a World Cup.

France have somewhat set the bar for attendances in the Championship in recent times but with the record mark having been set in successive Women’s Six Nations campaigns, the strength of the English support continues to grow.

And Simon Middleton’s side didn’t disappoint the vociferous crowd at the home of Harlequins, with a Poppy Cleall hat-trick helping the in-form reigning champions to a ten-try victory that stretched their lead at the top of the Women’s Six Nations standings to eight points.

Bern, 22, joked the additional numbers in the crowd made it harder to identify her family, but expressed her delight at being able to experience such valuable support.

“It’s amazing out on the pitch,” she said. “I was trying to find my mum and I had to run around the whole stadium!

“To have all the fans here and feel all of their support cheering us on means a lot. There were people chanting our names and it really does give you a huge confidence boost as a player.

“It gives you a bit of an edge to want to go and do something special and I think we’ve seen that with the performance. I’m delighted and very proud to have been part of it.”