Six Nations 2020: Wales women suffer heavy defeat against France

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Six Nations 2020 Highlights: Wales 0-50 France
Womens Six Nations: Wales v France
Wales (0) 0
France (19) 50
Tries: Banet 2, Sansus 2, N'Diaye, Menager, Annery, Boudaud Cons: Tremouliere 5

France ran riot in the second half to put 50 points past Wales and condemn them to a third Six Nations defeat.

Their semi-professional outfit showed a clinical edge lacking from a Welsh side that again had multiple changes and tournament debutants.

France scored eight tries, including two each for Cyrielle Banet and Laure Sansus, with Jessy Tremouliere adding 10 points with the boot.

France are second in the table behind England, with Wales sixth.

It was a second successive Six Nations hammering by the French after the 52-3 defeat Wales suffered away last year.

Alisha Butchers offloads
Blindside flanker Alisha Butchers of Wales offloads as she is tackled by France scrum-halfLaure Sansus

As predicted after her two-try standout display against Italy, Montpellier wing Banet caused the Welsh defence trouble all afternoon.

The game was just a couple of minutes old when she shrugged off a weak Welsh tackle to go tearing down the flank to score.

Wales, to their credit, came back into it and showed some promising signs in attack but lacked a clinical edge when the overlap was on.

As momentum shifted, France took advantage of their time in the Welsh half with two quick tries before half-time, much to the delight of the strong contingent of travelling supporters.

First scrum-half Sansus exposed a sleepy Welsh defence with a quick tap penalty from a scrum to glide over, then Banet latched on to a beautifully weighted cross kick from outside-half Pauline Bourdon to bag her second.

Full-back Tremouliere added both conversions to make it 19-0 at the break.

Wales desperately needed to score first in the second half but, playing with the wind, it was the French who added to their advantage, this time through the forwards with second row Safi N'Diaye powering over to secure the bonus point.

Bethan Lewis of Wales
Openside flanker Bethan Lewis tries to make ground for Wales

And with an air of predictability France did not have to wait much longer for another, Sansus crossing in the corner for her second.

Wales replacement Lauren Smyth's line break gave the home fans something to cheer, but she found herself gobbled up by several defenders before support could arrive.

Wales continued to chip away in attack but lacked the cohesion needed to get across the line. France in comparison only needed a sniff and scored another two quick tries through wing Marine Menager and flanker Julie Annery.

Replacement Camille Boudaud helped her side reach the half-century with the eighth and final try, Tremouliere nailing the difficult conversion.

Wales captain Siwan Lillicrap said:

"France are semi-professional and a top-three side in the world for a reason.

"But when we reflect and look at the game, we fronted up, especially in the first 20 we dominated a lot of possession.

"The tries they scored off our attacking mistakes were probably quite high. That's something we can correct and if we take our opportunities we are in a different place.

"I keep reminding myself we are on this journey and we are a young squad building towards the next World Cup and beyond."

Line-ups

Wales: Kayleigh Powell; Caitlin Lewis, Megan Webb, Kerin Lake, Lisa Neumann; Robyn Wilkins, Keira Bevan; Gwenllian Pyrs, Kelsey Jones, Cerys Hale, Georgia Evans, Gwen Crabb, Alisha Butchers, Bethan Lewis, Siwan Lillicrap (capt).

Replacements: Molly Kelly, Cara Hope, Ruth Lewis, Robyn Lock, Manon Johnes, Ffion Lewis, Courtney Keight, Lauren Smyth.

France: Jessy Tremouliere; Cyrielle Banet, Coralie Bertrand, Morgane Peyronnet, Marine Menager; Pauline Bourdon, Laure Sansus; Mailys Traore, Agathe Sochat, Clara Joyeux, Safi N'Diaye, Audrey Forlani, Julie Annery, Coumba Diallo, Gaelle Hermet (capt).

Replacements: Laure Touye, Lise Arricastre, Yllana Brosseau, Lenaig Corson, Celine Ferer, Yanna Rivoalen, Camille Boudaud, Caroline Boujard.

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