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Women's Rugby World Cup: England draw with Canada to send New Zealand crashing out
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A frenetic 13-13 draw between England and Canada in Marcoussis has sent four-time champions New Zealand crashing out of the Women’s Rugby World Cup.
England’s superior points difference mean they top Pool A and secure a semi-final berth, while Canada are also through after Australia lost 17-3 to France.
Ireland's 40-5 thrashing of Kazakhstan earlier on Saturday ensured they top Pool B and England’s draw with Pool A rivals Canada meant New Zealand faced USA knowing their result was meaningless.
A bonus point win for the Black Ferns over the United States - they won 34-3 - was not enough for them to claim the best runners-up spot who join the three pool winners in the semi-finals, as Canada hold a six-point advantage over the four-time defending champions.
Gary Street’s England always knew their final group-stage match again Canada would be a potential group decider and so it proved to be, with both nations entering the match on 10 points after a pair of bonus-point wins apiece.
It was a tense Pool A decider, with Canada scoring the opening try through Karen Paquin after an early Emily Scarratt penalty for England.
Scarratt added a second before the break as England led 6-5, but the Canadians came back strongly thanks to Kayla Mack's try.
Sarah Hunter's try 15 minutes into the second half put England back in front, only for Magali Harvey to knock over a late penalty to tie things up at 13-13.
Hunter said: "It was physical and competitive. We knew that Canada would front up and they definitely brought their game to us.
"We know that we've been in a battle and it was a great game to be involved in. We're delighted to get out of the pool - that's what it was always about.
"We know that we are going to have to improve on today's performance, but we have a few days now and we'll look to recover and switch focus on to the next one."
In the semi-finals on Wednesday, Ireland will face England while France take on Canada.World Cup. Click here to bet.