Cold showers, dance routines and Storm Ciara all feature in this round-up of the latest events in the women’s championship
Women’s Six Nations 2020 Round Two
England and Ireland will put their Women’s Six Nations Grand Slams hopes on the line at Doncaster’s Castle Park in two weeks’ time.
Both teams sit on nine points with two wins from two after the opening rounds – but the Red Roses are overwhelming favourites to continue their bid for back-to-back Slams having followed up their victory over France with a 53-0 thumping of Scotland.
The match was originally due to be played at Scotstoun in Glasgow on Sunday lunchtime but because of safety concerns surrounding Storm Ciara it was moved to BT Murrayfield on Monday, where it was played behind closed doors.
There were still challenging conditions to deal with, too. The snow descended in the second half and players were keeping their hands warm on bottles of hot water during breaks in play.
Despite the bad weather, England scored eight tries and kept a clean sheet. Emily Scott and Abby Dow both notched braces while Sarah Bern, Jess Breach, Sarah Hunter and Claudia MacDonald also touched down.
The pick of the bunch was this individual score from Dow in the first half…
There was also a significant milestone for Emily Scarratt, who overtook Katy Daley-Mclean with her final conversion to become England Women’s top point-scorer with 539.
Wales won away in Ireland last November but were not able to repeat the feat in the Six Nations. Ireland backed up their opening victory over Scotland with a 31-12 triumph over the Welsh in difficult conditions in Dublin.
The hosts led 17-0 after 32 minutes thanks to tries from Beibhinn Parsons, Cliodhna Maloney and Lauren Delany before Lauren Smyth reduced the deficit before half-time.
Ireland then wrapped up the try bonus point straight after the break with Linda Djougang’s score.
Siwan Lillicrap did cross for another Welsh try, but they simply weren’t clinical enough to close the gap further and an Irish penalty try in the final minute rounded off the scoring.
Heavy rain and strong winds from Storm Ciara didn’t help either team in the last half-hour, the bad weather making it hard to keep hold of the ball.
There was also some controversy post-match as Wales players had to endure cold showers. Both the IRFU and Bective Rangers, whose clubhouse was being used by Wales, have apologised for the lack of hot water – a result of damage sustained in the storm.
“The cause was found to be that the hot water tank on the roof of the clubhouse sustained damage during the stormy conditions overnight/today,” said the Bective Rangers statement. “We wish to apologise to the whole Wales Women’s team, the Welsh union and the IRFU.
“Bective was not aware of the issue with the showers until after the final whistle when the Welsh team returned to the dressing room.”
France bounced back from their defeat by England in the opening round to comfortably see off Italy 45-10 in Limoges on Saturday night.
Wing Cyrielle Banet scored two of France’s six tries, with Audrey Forlani, Julie Annery and Laure Sansus also crossing as well as a penalty try being awarded.
Sara Barattin scored Italy’s only try but the visitors couldn’t build on their opening win over Wales – or last year’s victory against France.
France also showed decent skills with their post-match celebrations…
Italy host winless Scotland in their next game while France travel to Wales, another team that is looking for their first victory of this year’s championship.
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