France too strong for Ireland in playoffs



A Niamh Briggs try after six minutes in Ireland's third place playoff in the Womens Rugby World Cup was not enough to secure the win for a brave Irish side who battled hard but came up short against a strong French outfit.

Briggs was on hand to capitalise on some excellent work by the forwards who pressed the French defensive line. Rosser worked the ball out right and Briggs needed no second invitation to reach long and dot the ball down over the line.

Briggs converted her try to give Ireland an early lead but France responded with a well taken try by skipper Gaelle Mignot who followed up the driving maul from a well taken lineout on 13 minutes to score France's opening try which was converted by Agricole to level the scores.

Briggs retook the lead for Ireland with a penalty on 28 minutes, but on the half hour the French struck back when Jessy Tremouliere broke the Irish defence out wide following some superb handling by the French backs on 31 minutes to cross the line.

It looked like Ireland would be trailing France at the interval but on the cusp of 40 minutes a piece of individual brilliance by Grace Davitt saw the Irish centre chip the defence, collect the ball and race her way over the line and give Ireland a halftime lead.

Seven minutes after the restart and French winger Elodie Guiglion scrossed the line to take the lead for her side  although the conversion was unsuccessful. Once again swift hands by the French backline stretched the Irish defence and the winger went in in the corner

Briggs kept Ireland in contention with a penalty just after the hour mark but France responded through the boot of Jessy Tremouliere who slotted over a well taken penalty on 56 minutes.

A missed Briggs penalty on 71 minutes was responded to by Guiglion who crossed the line for her second try of the afternoon, the conversion was missed by Duff but France had done enough to secure the win with an 18-25 winning margin