Saxons crush USA, Canada beat Italy

Date published: June 4 2011

England Saxons destroyed the USA 87-8 in their opening match of the Churchill Cup at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

England Saxons destroyed the USA 87-8 in their opening match of the Churchill Cup at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

A hat-trick from winger Miles Benjamin, as well as a brace from full-back Mike Brown, helped the Saxons put 13 tries plus a penalty try past the hapless Eagles.

The home pack's dominance was underpinned by an eye-catching display from Matt Stevens who was making his first appearance in England colours since serving a two-year ban for drug use.

Rory Clegg contributed with a 22-point haul from the kicking tee.

Surprisingly, it was the Americans who took the lead, with Tai Enosa landing an early penalty, but it was one-way traffic from there as Stuart Lancaster's outfit laid down an early marker in the defence of their Churchill Cup crown.

A surge from captain Jordan Crane created the chance for Benjamin to cross for his first try and Brown took advantage of sloppy American play to take England clear.

Brown kicked through for Benjamin to sprint on and touch down for his second five-pointer, and Micky Young pounced soon afterwards to inflict more pain on former Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan's team.

The penalty try moved Saxons 33-3 ahead, and the tries continued to flow after the interval, Brown adding another in the early stages of the second half and Tom Johnson dashing over in fine style before Billy Twelvetrees added his name to the scoresheet.

Henry Trinder and Charlie Sharples kept the score ticking over before Kitchener scored one and set up another for Hodgson who cantered over under the posts.

The most scant of consolations arrived late on for the United States as Scott Lavalla powered over from close range.

The scorers:

For England Saxons:
Tries: Benjamin 3, Brown 2, Young, Penalty try, Johnson, Twelvetrees, Trinder, Sharples, Kitchener, Hodgson
Cons: Clegg 11

For USA:
Tries: Lavalla
Pens: Enosa

England Saxons: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Topsy Ojo, 13 Henry Trinder, 12 Billy Twelvetrees , 11 Miles Benjamin, 10 Rory Clegg, 9 Micky Young, 8 Jordan Crane (c), 7 Tom Johnson, 6 James Gaskell, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Matt Stevens, 2 Joe Gray, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 David Paice, 17 Kieran Brookes, 18 Graham Kitchener, 19 Jamie Gibson, 20 Paul Hodgson, 21 Alex Goode, 22 Charlie Sharples.

USA: 15 Mike Palefau, 14 Mile Pulu, 13 Tai Enosa, 12 Junior Sifa, 11 Colin Hawley, 10 Troy Hall, 9 Mike Petri (capt), 8 JJ Gagiano, 7 Danny LaPrevotte, 6 Pat Danahy, 5 Scott LaValla, 4 John van der Giessen, 3 Will Johnson, 2 Phil Thiel, 1 Eric Fry.
Replacements: 16 Chris Biller, 17 Shawn Pittman, 18 Louis Stanfill, 19 Inaki Basauri, 20 Tim Usasz, 21 Roland Suniula, 22 Andrew Suniula.

Venue: Franklin's Gardens
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)

Canada got their Churchill Cup campaign off to a winning start on Saturday with a 26-12 win over Italy “A” at Franklin's Gardens.

The Canadians ran in three tries past their opponents with the Italians unable to score one of their own, giving credit to the winners runners-up finish in last year's tournament.

Number eight Aaron Carpenter, prop Jason Marshall and full-back James Pritchard all went over the white-wash in a 12-minute blitz just after half-time.

Pritchard also bagged eight points with the boot, while fly-half Ander Munro slotted a first-half drop goal.

However, Valerio Bernabo's yellow card early into the second half reduced the Azzuri to 14 men and gave the Canucks the upper hand, the Canadians duly took advantage, racing out into a 16-9 lead.

Man-of-the-match Chauncey O'Toole, who set up the try for Pritchard, said: “That was great win for us – we are really pleased with that. It was a great effort at the end to keep them out.”

The scorers:

For Italy A:
Pens: Tebaldi 4

For Canada:
Tries: Carpenter, Marshall, Pritchard
Cons: Pritchard
Pens: Pritchard 2
Drops: Monro

Italy A: 15 Ruggero Trevisan, 14 Andrea Bacchetti, 13 Denis Majstrovic, 12 Matteo Pratichetti, 11 Michele Sepe, 10 Riccardo Bocchino, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Manoa Vosawai, 7 Mauro Bergamasco, 6 Valerio Bernabo' (capt), 5 Marco Bortolami, 4 Corniel Van Zyl, 3 Fabio Staibano, 2 Tommaso D'Apice, 1 Alberto de Marchi.
Replacements: 16 Andrea Manici, 17 Matias Aguero, 18 Dario Chistolini, 19 Joshua Furno, 20 Francesco Minto, 21 Giulio Toniolatti, 25 Durandt Gerber.

Canada: 15 James Pritchard, 14 Ciaran Hearn, 13 Conor Trainor, 12 Ryan Smith, 11 Phil Mackenzie, 10 Ander Monro, 9 Ed Fairhurst, 8 Aaron Carpenter, 7 Chauncey O'Toole, 6 Jebb Sinclair, 5 Brian Erichsen, 4 Tyler Hotson, 3 Jason Marshall, 2 Pat Riordan (C), 1 Hubert Buydens.
Replacements: 16 Ryan Hamilton, 17 Andrew Tiedemann, 18 Mitch Gudgeon, 19 Nanyak Dala, 20 Sean White, 21 Mike Scholz, 22 Matt Evans.

Venue: Franklin's Gardens
Referee: Dave Pearson (England)