England overwhelm improving Wales in Women's Six Nations

On the attack: Abby Dow (C) scored one of <a class="link " href="" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:England;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">England</a>'s eight tries in a 46-10 Women's Six Nations win over <a class="link " href="" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Wales;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Wales</a> (Adrian DENNIS)

Reigning champions England made it two bonus-point wins from two games in this season's Women's Six Nations with a commanding 46-10 defeat of Wales in Bristol on Saturday.

England ran in eight tries in front of a crowd of over 19,000 at Ashton Gate, with full-back Ellie Kildunne scoring twice.

The Red Roses have become the dominant force in the Women's Six Nations after turning professional much earlier than their European rivals.

They have won the Women's Six Nations for five successive years, with only a change in format in a Covid-hit 2021 campaign preventing them from doing so with a Grand Slam on each occasion.

"It was a good performance and we worked our way into each half," England coach John Mitchell told the BBC. "The variety of the scoring was positive and there is still a lot more growth to come.

He added: "What I liked today is we had pressure for long periods of time and executed very well."

England, in their second match under former New Zealand men's head coach Mitchell, kicked-off fresh from a 48-0 rout of Italy in the first round.

First-half tries from props Maud Muir and Hannah Botterman, hooker Lark Atkin-Davies and lock Zoe Aldcroft were an indication of England's forward power, with Holly Aitchison kicking two conversions.

Wales had briefly led through a Lleucu George penalty but the result was never remotely in doubt with England, 24-3 ahead at half-time, piling on the points in the second half as Kildunne and wing Abby Dow added further tries.

Keira Bevan, on as a replacement, managed a consolation try for Wales, with George converting.

There was still time, however, for England lock Rosie Galligan and Kildunne, whose second try matched her double against Italy last weekend, to cross Wales's try-line.

Nevertheless, a 36-point margin of defeat represented progress for Wales after they were thrashed 59-3 by England in last season's Six Nations.

But the result still meant Wales had been beaten in their opening two games this term after they started the tournament with an agonising 20-18 loss to Scotland in Cardiff.

"We showed our fight, it was outstanding," said Wales coach Ioan Cunningham after Saturday's defeat. "We have to be more clinical and show more composure. You can have 100 phases but it's about crossing the line.

"Fair play to England they score quickly and the scoreboard can get away from you. To go to the next level we have to take opportunities."