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Women’s Six Nations 2022: France 39-6 Italy

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TikTok Women’s Six Nations: France v Italy
France: (17) 39
Tries: Fall, Gros, Murie, Boulard, Jacquet; Pens: Drouin 2; Cons: Drouin 2, Tremouliere 2
Italy: (6) 6
Pens: Sillari 2

France stifled a determined Italy to open their Women’s Six Nations with a gritty bonus-point win in Grenoble.

Madoussou Fall and Emeline Gros’ tries helped Les Bleues – who are seeking a first title since 2018 – to a 17-6 lead at half-time.

 

Italy continued to challenge but tries from Lea Murie, Emilie Boulard and Chloe Jacquet sealed a French win.

France are second in the table and a final-weekend encounter with England is expected to decide the title.

A Women's Six Nations table showing: 1. England P 1 W 1 D 0 L 0 PD 52 B 1 Pts 5; 2. France P 1 W 1 D 0 L 0 PD 33 B 1 Pts 5; 3. Wales P 1 W 1 D 0 L 0 PD 8 B 1 Pts 5; 4. Ireland P 1 W 0 D 0 L 1 PD -8 B 0 Pts 0; 5. Italy P 1 W 0 D 0 L 1 PD -33 B 0 Pts 0; 6. Scotland P 1 W 0 D 0 L 1 PD -52 B 0 Pts 0;

France score late flurry after shaky start

Just as England did in victory against Scotland on Saturday, France got off to a shaky start with no shortage of loose passes but eventually capitalised on Italian ill-discipline with a Caroline Drouin penalty.

Italy looked much slicker initially and, after Michela Sillari claimed a penalty of her own, hooker Melissa Bettoni made it over the tryline but French defenders managed to hold the ball up.

The hosts struggled with their line-outs but eventually managed to string phases together and Italy could not contain France’s forwards from close range as lock Fall, then number eight Gros went over.

Italy were increasingly threatening and Sillari added a second penalty but, despite numerous breaks in midfield, the Azzurre could claim no more from the first half.

The visitors were again the more spirited side after the break, but France extended their lead through another Drouin penalty.

Replacement scrum-half Laure Sansus injected more pace into the hosts’ backline and a series of swift offloads helped Murie score.

Then, Boulard timed her supporting run to perfection to nip through a gap in Italy’s defence and cover half the pitch for a superb solo try and the bonus point before Jacquet’s score completed a late flurry.

Italy have shown they will prove to be a challenging opponent in this year’s tournament, while France have work to do if they are to stop England claiming a fourth successive title.

Player of the match – Madoussou Fall

France's Madoussou Fall
As well as scoring her side’s opening try, lock Madoussou Fall was key to halting Italy’s energetic attack as she made a team-high 15 tackles.

Line-ups

France: Jacquet; Murie, Filopon, Vernier, Castel; Drouin, Chambon; Deshayes, Sochat, Joyeux, Fall, Forlani, Menager, Hermet, Gros.

Replacements: Touye, Lindelauf, Khalfaoui, Feleu, Berthoumieu, Sansus, Tremouliere, Boulard.

Italy: Furlan; Muzzo, Sillari, D’Inca, Magatti; Rigoni, Stefan; Maris, Bettoni, Gai, Tounesi, Duca, Sberna, Locatelli, Giordano.

Replacements: Vecchini, Stecca, Seye, Fedrighi, Frangipani, Barattin, Madia, Ostuni Minuzzi.

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