Women’s Rugby World Cup: England, Ireland win on opening day
England thrashed Spain 56-5 in the opening game of the Women’s Rugby World Cup.
Winger Kay Wilson ran in four tries in Dublin to lead the Red Roses to victory.
Megan Jones opened the scoring in the first minute before Wilson notched a hat-trick before half time.
Diana Gasso took advantage of an England handling error to add Spain’s only score of the game in the 36th minute.
Six different players scored for England in the second half. Wilson scored her fourth of the match with further tries added by Emily Scarratt, Harriet Millar-Mills, Alex Matthews, Amy Cokayne and Lydia Thompson.
Hosts Ireland scraped a 19-17 win against Australia.
A single conversion separated the teams at half time. Nora Stapleton converted Larissa Muldoon’s try to put Ireland ahead before Mahalia Murphy went over.
Australia then went 10-7 ahead in the 56th minute through captain Shannon Parry but tries from Ciara Griffin and Sophie Spence put the Irish nine points ahead going into the final 10 minutes.
Hilisha Samoa pulled a try back four minutes later and Ashleigh Hewson’s conversion made it a two-point game.
Ireland survived a late onslaught to take the narrow victory.
It was not an easy afternoon for Wales though, who lost 44-12 to New Zealand.
The All Blacks took a 20-point lead into half time and Selica Winiata completed her hat-trick in the second half.
Sioned Harries and Melissa Clay scored for Wales but they were unable to make any progress as New Zealand extended their lead in the second half.
Elsewhere, Canada scored 10 tries on the way to a 98-0 win over tournament newcomers Hong Kong and USA beat Italy 24-12. France defeated Japan 72-14 in the final game of the day.
Full Women’s Rugby World Cup results: England 56-5 Spain, New Zealand 44-12 Wales, USA 24-12 Italy, Canada 98-0 Hong Kong, Ireland 19-17 Australia, France 72-14 Japan