England and France W6N Road Warriors in Round 1

Women Six Nations Round 1 Highlights

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France's ferocious forwards and England's continuous attack bullied their opponents in round 1 of the 2019 Women's Six Nations. Les Bleus and the Red Roses positioned themselves as favorites to win the title, but the perennial powerhouses will have to prove it right away as they face off next Sunday, Feb. 10, in Doncaster, England, LIVE on FloRugby.

Red Roses Roll Ireland

England never let Ireland get their game plan started in Dublin, where the crowd set a new attendance record for a single-event women’s match. Ireland had one exciting intercept, but couldn’t bring it for a try.

England’s attack was masterful and it seems the professional contract structure has progressed England’s continuity over strength or fitness. When Ireland would play in tight, flyhalf Katey Daley-McLean would shift the ball out to the edges and let her back three operate on the corner. As soon as Ireland would spread themselves out, England would feed their forwards endless crash balls.

 

Any momentum Ireland had was stolen away by Daley-McLean's boot. Ireland forced Daley-McLean to the sideline where she looked to be out of space until she sent a perfect grubber down the touchline for her fullback to dot down.

Katey Daley-McLean took home the player of the match honors for steering the England attack around the pitch. “People are going to talk about England/France, but we had to come here tonight and do our job first," said Daley-McLean

The Red Roses not only spot space well, but they can move the ball exactly where it needs to go. France will be England’s toughest test and they square off next Sunday live on FloRugby.

2019 Women's Six Nations Viewing Schedule
DateMatchupScoreLinkWho Can Watch
Feb-1England at Ireland51-5On-DemandUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-1Italy at Scotland28-7On-DemandUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-2Wales at France3-53On-DemandUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-8Ireland at Scotland1:35PM CT
7:35PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-9Wales at Italy1:00PM CT
7:00PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-10France at England6:45AM CT
12:45PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-23Ireland at Italy12:45PM CT
6:45PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-23Scotland at France2:00PM CT
8:00PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Feb-24England at Wales6:30AM CT
12:30PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-8Wales at Scotland1:35PM CT
7:35PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-9Italy at England6:05AM CT
12:05PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-9France at Ireland1:00PM CT
7:00PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-16Scotland at England2:30PM CT
8:30PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-17Ireland at Wales8:30AM CT
2:30PM GMT
Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal
Mar-17France at Italy8:30AM CT
2:30PM GMT

Watch LiveUSA, Middle East, North Africa, Portugal

Ferocious France

France is absolutely monstrous in the forwards and they snatched the Welsh home momentum at the first possession. Les Bleus destroyed the first Welsh scrum, earned the penalty and then mauled in the lineout for the try. 

Lock Safi N’Diaye was undoubtedly the best player on the pitch. N’Diaye uses every ounce of her 5-foot-11, 205-pound frame to punish the defense, whether rucking or carrying the ball. She towers over defenders with her upright running style, so when she’s only wrapped by tacklers she has full mobility to make an offload or a full-on pass in contact.

When N'Diaye dove over for a snipe pass try the commentator said, "To be fair there aren't many players that can keep N'Diaye out from the close to the tryline."

The highlight of the match came from the boot of French flyhalf Camille Imart with her cross-field kick to her wing Lea Murie.

Next Sunday, France will not be able to bully England’s forwards like they did the Welsh. The flyhalf battle of Katey Daley McLean and Camille Imart will determine not only the match but likely the Six Nations title. 

Italy Puts Scotland to Sleep

Italy and Scotland was the tightest test of the weekend. For a long stretch the match was kept 7-7, but the Italians pulled away with 10 minutes to play for the 28-7 victory. Italy forced Scotland to defend their try line several times in the match. By the end of the match there were Scotland players receiving aid from the physio at every stoppage, a sign that Italy had tired out the Scots.

Both Scotland and Italy have smaller backlines, which will give them issues against the bigger France squad, and both will likely struggle to keep up with England’s fitness and continuous attack. 

Scotland On Fire In Match-up Against Georgia

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Darcy Graham quick-tapped near the goal-line and pinballed his way into the try-zone to get Scotland on the board after just two minutes. Adam Hastings was accurate from out wide to give the Scots an early 7-0 lead. 

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In March, the 2020 Six Nations was cut short with two rounds to play. But at long last, Wales, England, France, Ireland, Scotland, and Italy will finish up the competition this fall. 

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Codie Taylor, Crusaders

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