France win another bronze at Women's Rugby World Cup
France have run in five tries to thrash Canada 36-0 in the Women’s Rugby World Cup third-place playoff at Eden Park and secure the bronze medal for the seventh time in nine editions of the tournament.
Winger Marine Menager scored two tries and lock Madoussou Fall, outstanding halfback Pauline Bourdon and prop Annaelle Deshaye also crossed as France ruthlessly took apart the 2014 runners-up on Saturday.
Denied a place in their first final after Caroline Drouin missed a late penalty against New Zealand last week, France kept the Canadians shackled with brutal defence even when Gabrielle Vernier was sent to the sin bin in the second half.
There was also some French flair to go with the forward power and Bourdon’s try came after centre Vernier had sliced through the Canadian defence, while Menager’s first resulted from a flurry of passes down the blindside.
“We are so happy about this medal,” Vernier said.
“It was a very difficult week after last week and we put our hearts on the field, we put everything out there.”
Drouin made some amends for her miss last week with 11 points from the tee in an almost faultless display of place-kicking.
Canada were the only one of the semi-finalists without full professional contracts and should take some pride from taking top-ranked England close in last week’s semi.
“We weren’t good enough today, credit to France,” Canada captain Sophie De Goede said.
“We came here to win a World Cup and we fell short of that so we’re disappointed, but hopefully it’ll be a good building block for the future.”
Hosts and defending champions New Zealand take on tournament favourites England for the trophy in the final at Eden Park later on Saturday.
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