Report: Scotland Women 0-46 England Women

Report: Scotland Women 0-46 England Women

A spirited Scotland side were overpowered as England ran out winners in the third round of the 2024 Guinness Women’s Six Nations in Edinburgh.

Blustery winds and driving rain arrived right on cue as the teams emerged out the tunnel of a raucous sold-out Hive Stadium. The first ever Scotland Women captain Sandra Colamartino received a deserved acclaim as she delivered the match ball to England stand-off Holly Aitchison.  The visitors got the contest started, with Scotland kicking right to left towards the Murrayfield end.

England’s Hannah Botterman had the first meaningful drive towards the line in the fifth minute. After being upended by the Scottish defence, England knocked-on and Meryl Smith duly obliged to clear. The visitors launched a second attack down their right, where hooker Amy Cokayne broke away from a tackle and went over for the lead. The conversion fell short [0-5, 6 mins].

England continued to probe, sustaining phases despite good defensive line speed from Scotland. The Red Roses went over again in the same corner, this time through Abby Dow after they overloaded on the right flank. Aitchison’s kick was short again from an identical position [0-10, 11 mins].

Two knock-ons gave Scotland consecutive scrums just inside the English half. Breaks by Louise McMillan and Meryl Smith gained more territory before Hannah Botterman intercepted a stray pass. Chloe Rollie was roared on by the home crowd as she broke forward, but the referee had already blown for a Scotland offside in the centre of the pitch.

The TMO ruled out a third try for the visitors in the 26th minute. The Red Roses moved the ball wide left on this occasion, but the touch judge spotted a knock-on by Ellie Kildunne in the lead up. Try-scorer Cokayne prevented team-mate Maud Muir’s score from standing as she blatantly cleared-out Evie Gallagher in the ruck. Although referee Clara Munarini missed it live, the TMO were quick to pick it up, and Cokayne was sent to the sin-bin.

Kildunne went under the posts after the half hour minutes after latching on to a kick inside. The full-back won the race to the loose ball, touching down between the sticks. Aitchison this time converted from a much more favourable position [0-17, 32 mins].


Half Time: Scotland 0-17 England

The sun emerged at Hive as Scotland got the second half underway. A change at the break saw Lisa Thomson replace Meryl Smith at centre.

Four minutes into the second half England were given a penalty less than ten metres from the Scotland line as the hosts failed to release. After a strong scrum, Sadia Kabeya went over for the visitors’ bonus point. Aitchison again obliged with the kick [0-24, 43 mins].

The rain which had been falling for large parts of the afternoon was showing as the knock-ons began to flow. England broke wide on the left following a scrum in the centre. With numbers aplenty the ball found it’s way to Jess Breach to score in the corner. An unconverted kick meant the score stood at [0-29, 51 mins].

England were reduced to 14 when Amy Cokayne picked up her second yellow of the afternoon. After checking with the TMO, referee Munarini dismissed the hooker for a high challenge on her opposite number Lana Skeldon.

Scotland kicked clear off their lineout following a huge penalty win from Elliann Clarke in the scrum. Breach collected the ball out the air and evaded several tackles down the left to score her second try of the game. Aitchison’s latest battle with the wind saw her kick miss the mark [0-34, 58 mins].

The left flank was proving popular for the visitors as they continued to apply pressure. Kildunne found the line for her second try after the Red Roses broke through the phases [0-39, 63 mins].

Elliann Clarke was proving a problem in the ruck, with an excellent jackal from the substitute earning Scotland a penalty with ten minutes to go. Louise McMillan then did superbly to steal an English lineout in her own half. The gusts which had caused havoc all afternoon were proving problematic, with Scotland unable to find touch with their kicking.

Substitute Marlie Packer found the line for England again after a Scottish lineout went awry. A quick pass to the number 20 freed the space for her to go over just to the left of the posts [0-46, 72 mins].

Scotland continued to rally. Rhona Lloyd found some space as she came in off the right-hand side. She looked to offload to Rachel Malcolm, but the pass was just too low and the captain knocked it on.

Full Time: Scotland 0-46 England

Scotland: 15. Chloe Rollie 14. Rhona Lloyd 13. Emma Orr 12. Meryl Smith 11. Coreen Grant 10. Helen Nelson (VC) 9. Caity Mattinson 1. Leah Bartlett 2. Lana Skeldon 3. Christine Belisle 4. Fiona McIntosh 5. Louise McMillan 6. Rachel Malcolm (C) 7. Alex Stewart  8. Evie Gallagher

Replacements: 16. Elis Martin 17. Molly Wright 18. Elliann Clarke 19. Eva Donaldson 20. Rachel McLachlan 21. Mairi McDonald 22. Lisa Thomson 23. Francesca McGhie

England: 15. Ellie Kildunne 14. Abby Dow 13. Megan Jones 12. Tatyana Heard 11. Jess Breach 10. Holly Aitchison 9. Natasha Hunt 1. Hannah Botterman 2. Amy Cokayne 3. Maud Muir 4. Rosie Galligan 5. Abbie Ward 6. Zoe Aldcroft (C) 7. Sadia Kabeya 8. Alex Matthews

Replacements: 16. Connie Powell 17. Mackenzie Carson 18. Kelsey Clifford 19. Maddie Feaunati 20. Marlie Packer 21. Lucy Packer 22. Zoe Harrison 23. Sydney Gregson

Referee: Clara Munarini (FIR)

Assistant Referees: Maria Latos (GER) and Adele Robert (BEL)

TMO: Matteo Liperini (FIR)

Attendance: 7,774

Player of the Match: Ellie Kildunne

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