x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

England find form against France

England cut out the indiscipline to rout visiting France 34-10 in the Six Nations and produce their best performance since the 2007 World Cup.

Mark Cueto makes a break for England supported by teammate Joe Worsley, left, and chased by France's Sebastien Chabal.
Mark Cueto makes a break for England supported by teammate Joe Worsley, left, and chased by France's Sebastien Chabal.

TWICKENHAM, England // England finally cut out the indiscipline to rout visiting France 34-10 in the Six Nations and produce their best performance since the 2007 World Cup. The England manager Martin Johnson's exhortations to his team to stop conceding yellow cards paid off as a fluid home side blended forward power and some sparkling back play to outscore France by five tries to two at Twickenham. France, who went into the game a title hopeful but ended it well out of contention, was punished for exactly the sort of errors that have blighted England's past few performances, straying offside at the breakdown and continually turning over possession.

England, who had conceded 10 yellow cards in their past four matches, led within a minute and were 29-0 up at half-time after tries by Mark Cueto, Riki Flutey, Delon Armitage and Joe Worsley. Flutey touched down again at the start of the second period before England tired and an improved French team, bolstered by replacements, got scores from Dimitri Szarzewski and Julien Malzieu. The late effort ensured England did not rival the 37-0 win in 1911 that represents their biggest ever win over France, but England still moved above their opponent to third in the standings and could even finish as runner-up with victory over Scotland in next week's final round.

Ireland lead with four wins following Saturday's 22-15 victory at Scotland and can complete its first Grand Slam since 1948 if it wins at the second-place Welsh. *AP