NEW Zealand Ferns began their World Cup campaign in impressive fashion, thrashing France 46-0.
France were incredible in the opening quarter, keeping the Ferns out with staunch defence. However, they could not keep Madison Bartlett out just after the midway point in the first-half following a swift right to left move.
It was two in five minutes for the Ferns with Raecene McGregor’s grubber kick hitting the post and falling into the path of Apii Nichols. Brianna Clark converted for a 10-0 lead.
Amber Hall and Roxy Murdoch-Masila both dotted down before the break as New Zealand racked up a 20-0 half-time lead.
Katelyn Vaha’akolo was on the scoresheet straight after the resumption before Raecene McGregor’s kick to the corner was scooped up by sister Page. Nichols converted the latter as the Ferns made it 30-0.
Vaha’akolo got her second moments later with Murdoch-Masila rampaging over with five minutes to go. Clark’s third conversion made it 40-0.
The moment of the match came in the last minute when Shanice Parker picked up a loose kick before sprinting 90 metres for a scintillating score. Clark converted to round up the scoring at 46-0.
Apii Nichols, Katelyn Vaha’akolo, Shanice Parker, Page McGregor, Madison Bartlett, Autumn-Rain Stephens Daly, Raecene McGregor, Mya Hil-Moana, Krystal Rota (C), Annetta-Claudia Nu’uausala, Roxette Murdoch-Masila, Amber Hall, Georgia Hale. Subs (all used): Nita Maynard, Charlotte Scanlan, Otesa Pule, Brianna Clark
Tries: Bartlett, Nichols, Hall, Murdoch-Masila 2, Vaha’akolo 2, P McGregor
Goals: Clark 3/6, Nichols 1/2
Manon Samarra, Margot Canal, Laureane Biville, Zoe Pastre-Courtine, Cristina Song Puche, Elisa Ciria, Alice Varela (C), Cyndia Mansard, Fanny Ramos, Gaelle Alvernhe, Elisa Akpa, Perrine Monsarrat, Leila Bessahli. Subs (all used): Elodie Pacull, Mailys Borak, Tallis Kuresa, Dorine Samarra
Referee: Ben Thaler
Scoring sequence: 4-0, 10-0, 16-0, 20-0, 24-0, 30-0, 34-0, 40-0, 46-0
Venue: LNER Stadium, York