Cowell leads the way as England power past Canada to rack up another big win | England women’s rugby union team

If rugby union have been a sport that gave out marks for benefit the judges could be holding up 10s for Heather Cowell, the former Nice Britain junior tumbling gymnast turned rugby wing who ran in two first-half tries on a glittering worldwide debut as the relentless Crimson Roses rolled over their newest opponents in a seven-try victory.

In the area of 14 days England have twice filleted New Zealand and now carved up Canada, the groups ranked No2 and No3 in the world, scoring 150 factors, 22 tries and lengthening their successful streak to 17 matches over 28 months.

With the USA seemingly subsequent for the chopping block on Sunday and the Crimson Roses cemented at world No 1 lower than a 12 months from the delayed World Cup, maybe the solely query is: who can problem England?

The reply could have to wait till March and the Six Nations remaining spherical when England will face France, a team who added their very own intrigue to the World Cup subplot by beating New Zealand 38-13 on Saturday.

Definitely the Maple Leafs requested England helpful questions, a minimum of in the first half, however finally had no reply as England steamrollered to victory in entrance of a boisterous 6,310 crowd at The Stoop. Other than Cowell’s eye-catching debut, the ever-smiling prop Sarah Bern additionally dazzled with two tries in a player-of-the-match efficiency that was explosive in assault and ferocious in defence. She put her dominant show down to a pre-match meal of jam on toast.

There have been classes for England alongside the way. Attacking play was typically rushed, the phases often scrappy and the penalty rely too excessive, Canada bringing a physicality that shall be helpful meals for thought for Simon Middleton and his team.

“That was a tricky recreation,” stated the head coach. “We had to climate a little bit of a storm and work out how to break them down in the first half, and in the second half we have been excellent.”

Sarah Hunter, returning to captain the aspect at flanker, echoed the sentiment. “It’s about the way you reply to going behind. The nice factor was we didn’t get flustered. We stayed composed and received again in the recreation.”

England’s Sarah Bern tries to push her way through Canada’s defence.
England’s Sarah Bern, who scored two tries, tries to push her way by way of Canada’s defence. {Photograph}: Bob Bradford – CameraSport/CameraSport/Getty Photographs

Cowell, the 25-year-old Harlequins wing enjoying at residence, scored her and England’s first strive 4 minutes into her worldwide debut, touching down in the nook along with her first contact of the match. “I simply strive to play the greatest rugby I can and if tries come that’s nice,” she stated modestly afterwards. “I like the competitors for locations and I need to earn the shirt.”

Middleton had stated he anticipated a problem from Canada and so it proved. After 21 minutes in opposition to the Black Ferns final week England have been 21-0 up. However right here they discovered themselves behind for the first time this autumn. Lagi Tuima couldn’t take a cross and Paige Farries, the Worcester wing, gleefully scooped up the ball to run in from 45 metres. The conversion left England 7-5 down. Sport on.

England responded seven minutes later, setting it up with two of their emblems: an immaculate lineout adopted by a driving maul, teeing up the phases and permitting Bern to crash over for her first strive. Zoe Harrison transformed and shortly after added three extra factors with a penalty.

Canada weren’t completed although, wing Sabrina Poulin dancing and weaving as England’s defence was caught napping to cross in the nook in a second of particular person brilliance. However England hit again, Cowell ending the half as she began it, scoring a strive in the nook after another signature-dish driving maul had opened up area to exploit.

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Two minutes into the second half Bern additionally had her second strive, punching her way by way of tackles and, quickly after, the scrum-half Claudia MacDonald went herself from a maul 20m out for England’s fifth strive as Canada’s defensive dam burst.

Harrison added another penalty earlier than substitute Alex Matthews dodged between tackles to run in underneath the posts for England’s sixth strive of the day. There was nonetheless time for a seventh and MacDonald’s second as she went over in the nook, Harrison changing to deliver up England’s half-century.

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