England put 10 tries past Italy to keep up momentum


Danielle Waterman and Emily Scaratt scored two tries each as England ran riot against the Italians.

It was not ideal - too many handling errors and an indifferent scrum will not have gone unnoticed by the head coach, Simon Middleton - but it was a case of mission accomplished for England, who are cruising towards the semi-finals. Next up they face the US on Thursday, perhaps their hardest pool stage match but another they will be expected to come through, and Middleton has now blooded 27 of his 28-strong squad in Ireland. Zoe Aldcroft, 6. Izzy Noel-Smith, 7.

A try just before the break from Amy Cokayne made it 22-8, and England took full control after the break.

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Alex Matthews - running a ideal line up the middle - notched the second try, scooting in under the posts but the first cracks appeared when Veronica Schiavon slotted a penalty for Italy and Maria Magatti finished off a sharp move down Italy's right.

Waterman completed her hat-trick in the 64th minute, while Thompson touched down for her second and winger Amy Wilson-Hardy went over in the last minute to cap a comfortable win.

England notched their second straight 10-try win in defence of their World Cup title by over-powering Pool A rivals Italy 56-13. Head coach Simon Middleton made ten changes to the starting side that put ten tries and more than 50 points past Spain in their opening game on Wednesday.