Fleetwood hat-trick sinks Italy

Date published: February 25 2017

England breezed past Italy with a 29-15 win after a hat-trick from hooker Vicky Fleetwood at The Stoop on Saturday.

Italy were the first on the score board after winger Sofia Stefan scored a try in the first three minutes of the game, giving her side an early lead.

But it would be all England for the rest of the first half after flyer Kay Wilson grabbed a try in the 15th minute to level the score. England then claimed the lead two minutes later when opposite wing Amy Wilson Hardy scored a try of her own with outside centre Emily Scarratt adding the extras.

Fleetwood then nabbed her first five-pointer of the game when England used their maul well and Fleetwood was able to burrow her away over the line.

England’s maul proved to be prolific on the day as the hooker scored her second try of the game securing her side a bonus point with their fourth try.

She couldn’t keep herself away from the try line as just after the beginning of the first half she would score her third try and become the first English forward in the Womens’ Six Nations history to score a hat-trick.

England had done enough by then to secure the win although Italy dominated proceedings in the second half scoring two tries through scrum-half Sara Barattin in the 55th minute after finding a gap in the England defence and racing towards the line.

There was another score from full-back Manuela Furlan in the 72nd minute, but it was not enough to overturn England’s lead.

England then ultimately went down to 13 players on the field after Katy Mclean and Poppy Cleall were both sent off with red and yellow cards respectively for dangerous tackles, but it had no outcome on the result.

The scorers:

For England:
Fleetwood 3, Wilson, Wilson-Hardy
Cons: Scarratt, Fleetwood
Yellow Card: Cleall
Red Card: McLean

For Italy:
Stefan, Barattin, Furlan
Yellow Card: Pillotti

England: 15 Sarah McKenna, 14 Amy Wilson Hardy, 13 Emily Scarratt, 12 Rachael Burford, 11 Kay Wilson, 10 Emily Scott, 9 La Toya Mason, 8 Sarah Hunter (c), 7 Marlie Packer, 6 Alex Matthews, 5 Tamara Taylor, 4 Harriet Millar-Mills, 3 Laura Keates, 2 Vicky Fleetwood, 1 Justine Lucas
Replacements: 16 Amy Cokayne, 17 Rochelle Clark, 18 Sarah Bern, 19 Poppy Cleall, 20 Izzy Noel-Smith, 21 Natasha Hunt, 22 Katy Mclean, 23 Amber Reed

Italy: 15 Manuela Furlan, 14 Sofia Stefan, 13 Michela Sillari, 12 Paola Zangirolami, 11 Maria Magatti, 10 Beatrice Rigoni, 9 Sara Barattin (c), 8 Elisa Giordano, 7 Isabellla Locatelli, 6 Lucia Cammarano, 5 Alice Trevisan, 4 Elisa Pillotti, 3 Lucia Gai, 2 Melissa Bettoni, 1 Marta Ferrari
Replacements: 16 Elisa Cucchiella, 17 Gaia Giacomoli, 18 Valentina Ruzza, 19 Michela Este, 20 Valeria Fedrighi, 21 Ilaria Arrighetti, 22 Veronica Madia, 23 Elisa Bonaldo

Referee: Graham Cooper (Australia)
Assistant Referees: Claire Hodnett (England), Local
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)