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England Women U20 defeat America in Nations Cup

18 July 2011

  • Treble from scrum half Fiona Davidson hat-trick helps secure USA victory
  • Southern Hemisphere giants up next at Nation South Africa

England Women U20 37 USA Women U20 0

England Under 20 No.8 Harriet Mills, who will captain the side in the Nations Cup opener against Canada

Photo: Getty Images

England Women Under 20 maintained their unbeaten record in the Nations Cup in Santa Barbara on Sunday night with a comprehensive 37-0 victory over the USA.

England, who defeated Canada 41-0 on Thursday, ran in seven tries to nil with Richmond scrum half Fiona Davidson claiming a hat-trick of tries. There were also touch downs for Bristol’s Rebecca Hughes, Gloucester Reds’ Rachel Roberts, skipper Harriet Mills and Saracens’ Hannah Gallagher, who has now scored a try in every game she has played in for the U20.

England U20 Head Coach Amanda Bennett said: "This game was a step-up in terms of performance especially in the areas of defence. The USA were unable to score against us and that is testament to our discipline, organisation and pride in our tackle completion. The USA were physical, tenacious and determined but our team organisation, game understanding and patience paid off.

"After two games, everyone in the squad has had pitch time and we are faced with selection dilemmas going into our third game against South Africa on Wednesday. We now turn our attention to the Boks, who have improved in each game. We know we need to repeat, and improve on, our performance against the USA if we want to reach the Nations Cup final on Saturday."

It took England 16 minutes to break the deadlock as No. 9 Davidson claimed her first try after England’s pressure on the USA’s try-line paid off. A ruck just three metres out saw the ball popped to Davidson who crossed the line unopposed on the blindside. Worcester’s Ceri Large couldn’t make the conversion.

The tourists moved into a 10-0 lead soon after with wing Hughes finishing off some good work from the midfield. Amber Reed was tackled just short of the try-line but the ball was recycled along the line for Hughes to finish in the corner.

The conversion was missed but the one way traffic continued for England with Roberts touching down for a 32nd minute try. England turned the ball over at the scrum, and the ensuing ruck was secured by Davidson who moved the ball out wide for the Gloucester Reds full back to finish off.

Skipper Mills had the final word for England in the first half with a 40th minute try after England punsihed sloppy USA play. Some scrappy ball by the hosts saw the ball turned over on the try line and Mills picked up from the base and was driven over by the pack to score. With Large adding the conversion England headed into the second half with a healthy 22-0 lead.

Just like the first half, England had to be disciplined and patient after the restart, taking another 15 minutes for the Red Roses to underline their dominance on the score board. A USA line out saw England pressurise their ball carrier and move America backwards. England forced the turnover and the ball was quickly moved by England with Davidson finishing off the move to claim her second try.

Davidson didn’t have to wait long for her third touchdown after the scrum half collected the ball from the back of the scrum and dived around the blindside to score in the corner.

Saracens flanker Gallagher meanwhile continued her impressive form for England rounding off the 37-0 victory with the seventh and final try. 

Match action from the Nations Cup is available on http://www.ustream.tv/usarugby.

England Women's U20

15 Rachel Roberts (Gloucester Reds, Gloucestershire, North), 14 Katie Mason (Bristol, Somerset, South West), 13 Amber Reed (Bristol, Somerset/Devon, South West), 12 Ceri Large (Worcester, Gloucestershire, South West), 11 Rebecca Hughes (Bristol, Somerset, South West), 10 Emily Scott (Thurrock, Essex, London & South East), 9 Fiona Davidson (Richmond, Surrey, London & South East), 1 Emily Kingston (Gloucester Reds, Gloucestershire, South West), 2 Geri Thomas (Old Albanian Saints, Hertfordshire, London & SE), 3 Sarah George (Bristol, Devon, South West), 4 Ellie Gatlin (Rochford Hundred, Essex, London & South East), 5 Fiona Fletcher (Lichfield, Staffordshire, Midlands), 6 Alex Matthews (London Irish, Surrey, London & SE), 7 Megan Oaten (Thornbury, Dorset & Wilts, South West), 8 Harriet Mills (Lichfield, Staffordshire, Midlands.

Replacements: 16 Charlotte Notman (Newquay Hornets (Queen Bees), Cornwall, South West), 17 Millie Fuggles (Old Albanian Saints, Leicestershire, Midlands), 18 Mica Evans(Exeter Saracens, Devon, South West), 19 Hannah Gallagher(Saracens, Hertfordshire, London & South East), 20 Charlotte Keane (Worcester, South West), 21Amy Wilson Hardy (Bristol, Sussex, South West), 22 Georgia Peedle (Worcester, Hertfordshire, London & SE)

Tries: Davidson (3), Hughes, Roberts, Mills, Gallagher

Conversions: Large

Substitutions: Wilson Hardy for Reed (45), Gallagher for Oaten (47), Notman for Thomas (4), Peedle for Hughes, Fuggles for Kingston, Evans for George (all 60), Keane for Davidson (70).

Nations Cup Fixtures and Results

England v Canada (July 15, KO 12am BST) WON 41-0
USA v England (July 18, KO 12am BST) WON 37-0
England v South Africa (July 21, KO 12am BST)
Consolation Finals/Finals (July 23, KO 10pm or 12am BST)