England Women 20-18 France Women: Red Roses edge France
Last Updated: 11/07/19 6:35am
Emily Scarratt's late penalty saw the Red Roses beat France Women 20-18 to make it three wins from three at the Women's Rugby Super Series in San Diego and move top of the table.
France, buoyed from their win against the Black Ferns on Saturday, stunned England when a cross-field kick found Banet Cyrielle to dot down, but after Amber Reed had a try disallowed for grounding, from the resultant scrum Kelly Smith took the ball off the back of it and sprinted around the outside to score for England.
Caroline Boujard's darting run restored France's lead, with Jessy Tremouliere converting and then the French full-back, and current world player of the year, knocked over two penalties for a 5-18 half-time lead.
England hit back in the 50th minute when Zoe Harrison's cross-field kick bounced for Scarratt to drop down on for a try.
Scarratt's second try was from the same combination as Harrison's high kick was superbly taken out of the air by the centre, and Scarratt wrestled to the ground to score and then added the conversion.
With eight minutes left Scarratt then kicked a central 25-metre penalty as England took the lead of the first time in the match and held on for the win despite some intense pressure from France.
The win against France means the top two teams in the world will now face off in the final round as the Red Roses take on the Black Ferns on Sunday, live on Sky Sports.