Rugby Union

England win Women's Rugby World Cup

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England's women achieved the ultimate goal on Sunday by lifting the Women's Rugby World Cup after an outstanding 21-9 victory against Canada in Paris.

After a mixture of tenacity, inspirational pep talks and unbelievable displays of class and technique, England had pushed on to face Canada in a final showdown and lifted their second World Cup since the competition was established in 1991.

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Captain Katy Mclean spoke after the game and paid tribute to her teammates for achieving the ultimate goal, and now they'll go down as greats of the game - and it is well deserved after a mentally exhausting tournament.

"We've worked so hard for this, and there are so many great legends that have gone before us that haven't won in an England shirt, and that's for all of them who are here today," captain Katy Mclean explained.

"It started years ago with the people that have brought us here, our family and friends. We've had to work today - Canada were fantastic - and it's amazing to think we've done it."

The England skipper showed great desire throughout the tournament and from the first game against Samoa, where they thrashed their group opponents 65-3, there was great understanding and expectation that England were a fight for any team in this competition - especially favourites New Zealand.

Road to Paris

England were drawn in a difficult group, as no game in this competition is said to be easy; but Gary Street's team believed in themselves to collect thumping wins against both Samoa and Spain before drawing with Canada in the final group game.

After finishing top of their pool, England's women took on Ireland in the semi-finals; another tough encounter with Ireland able to beat any opponent on their day, but again Street's ladies powered on.

A 40-7 win against their neighbours saw England secure a World Cup final spot against group rivals Canada, as this was it for England; a time to go home licking their wounds or come back as heroes.

A tight game which didn't have the same nature of scoring as seen in past games but England prevailed to see off Francois Ratier's ladies and win the game 21-9, with Danielle Waterman and Emily Scarratt both scoring tries they won't forget quickly.


But considering England completed their goals and have made great use of the sport, setting the benchmark for the future stars of women's rugby, they deserve the respect and gratitude of any sportsman in the current game.

Since the World Cup was broadcasted it has turned into a national event with increasing numbers of people showing their interest, much like women's football when England play in a major tournament and the nation gets behind their team.

There have been weekly videos of the current men's national team showing their support and with Sky Sports showcasing the event it helped even more, making sure something so great was shown and not ignored.


The next step for the sport is for youngsters to get into rugby for there is no doubt Mclean and her colleagues have inspired a nation. And, considering the under 20s and under 18s in the men's game are dominating the youth levels, winning European Championships and World Cups, hopefully the women's game will move in the same motion.

Having lost three consecutive finals to New Zealand, including a 13-10 defeat on home soil in 2010, England's women should rightly enjoy their moment in the spotlight and reap the rewards that are now likely to come their way.

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