England beat Wales in front of record crowd

England beat Wales 46-10 in front of their largest ever crowd away from Twickenham

Published by Six Nations, March 30th, 2024

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England beat Wales in front of record crowd

Report: Six Nations

Wales took an early lead through a Lleucu George penalty but the England had the bonus point in the bag by half time as Maud Muir, Zoe Aldcroft, Hannah Botterman and Lark Atkin-Davies all crossed in the first period.

The hosts’ pressure continued after the break with Ellie Kildunne scoring two tries and Abby Dow and Rosie Galligan also adding to their collection either side of a sniping score by Wales scrum-half Keira Bevan.

England’s second successive eight-try victory was witnessed by record-breaking crowd of 19,705 – the largest home crowd for a fixture not played at Twickenham for the Red Roses.

Wales were backed by a sizable travelling contingent inside Ashton Gate and the visitors were first on the scoreboard.

Ioan Cunningham’s side found themselves camped out in England’s 22 early on and soon earned a penalty right in front of the posts, allowing George to slot between the posts.

But the Red Roses pack are inevitable and it wasn’t long before Muir responded with the first try of the game.

A sizzling Dow showed her pace, carving through the Welsh defence before being dragged down short. The ball was quickly recycled for Muir to power over from close range on the eight-minute mark.

The hosts soon washed up on the Wales line again, this time through the hands of Aldcroft on the occasion of her 50th cap. A neat line-out five metres out was followed by several brutal phases before quick ball allowed the lock to lunge over.

Holly Aitchison’s strike sailed through for the conversion after her first bounced off the post. Wales responded strongly and once again came achingly close to the Roses’ try-line. Atkin-Davies collapsed a looming Welsh maul giving the visitors a fighting chance, but the ball was hoovered up by Botterman.

And just a minute after winning the ball back for England, Botterman delivered a try of her own, battering over from a metre out, after Meg Jones made a slicing break from inside her 22.

With the clock in the red, Atkin-Davies secured the bonus-point try from a familiar weapon – the rolling maul – to send England into the changing room 21 points ahead.

England were quickly into their stride in the second half, Kildunne first to cross when she collected the ball off her laces and went over just three minutes after the restart.

Dow got herself on the board soon afterwards, benefiting from some well-worked hands and a galloping Tatyana Heard break.

It took 54 minutes for Wales to be rewarded for their hard work and it arrived in the end through the hands of Bevan.

The veteran scrum-half sniped underneath the posts from a quick tap penalty after some breathless phases and George successfully added the extras.

The reigning champions wouldn’t relent however, and the impressive Galligan found her way over four minutes later with Aitchison slotting the conversion.

Kildunne crossed for her second with 20 minutes remaining, doing superbly to dot down as she was bundled into touch by the oncoming Welsh defence.

The visitors ended the game inside the English 22 but were again unable to make their territory count with points on the board as the hosts saw out the victory to send the majority of the sizable crowd home happy.