Drouin misses last-gasp penalty as New Zealand book World Cup date with England

AUCKLAND, Nov 5 (Reuters) – France midfielder Caroline Drouin made the final tackle as defending champions New Zealand won the Women’s Rugby World Cup final against England 25-24 at Eden Park on Saturday. lost.

After Santo Taumata was yellow-carded for a high tackle, Drouin fired a last-minute strike wide to the left as the Black Ferns made a stunning escape in front of a roaring crowd.

Trailing 17-10 at half-time, the hosts took the lead through tries from Ruby Tui and Theresa Fitzpatrick, and France were in a good position in the 70th minute when Safi N’Diaye was sent off a woman for another high goal. .

Number eight Roman Menager put the French within a point with 14 minutes remaining.

But Drouin’s late miss sealed their fate.

France centre-back Gabriel Vernier refused to blame Drouin, saying his team could have won earlier.

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“We’re very proud of us today,” he said.

“We had to be better all game, we had to be better defensively.”

New Zealand, who have won five of the last six World Cups, face England in the last final of 2017.

England beat Canada 26-19 at Eden Park. read on

“It was an unbelievable finish,” New Zealand coach Wayne Smith said.

“I thought it was gone, but it’s not gone. It’s there and we have a chance next week.”

France have never been decisive players at the World Cup and will rue a semi-final that took them away from the tough task early on.

New Zealand had a furious 17-phase attack in the opening minutes, but the pressure was on in the 23rd minute when Menager crashed over the left post.

France’s defense was ferocious and Vernier was lucky not to pull the trigger after winger Tuy was lifted from the penalty spot.

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After half-time, Drouin made a full clearance and France finally conceded, hitting New Zealand in front of the post.

Flyhalf Ruahei Demant threw the ball to Stacey Fluler, who fired the ball into the left corner, setting the crowd on fire.

A goal from defender Renee Holmes made it 10-10, but the French came again and Vernier hit the left post on the stroke of half-time.

French misery

Four minutes after the restart, Holmes took the game a step further when he broke through the French defense in a skilful attack.

Human Lightning Tui sprinted past Emily Bullard, fingered the ball out of the defender’s hands and knocked it down just short of the goal line.

A few minutes later Holmes converted and missed a long-range free-kick, but the Black Ferns’ run was now at its peak as the French tired.

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Lock Maiakawanakaulani Roos took the hosts two meters from the post and Fitzpatrick pounced to give New Zealand the lead on the hour mark.

Demant scored and took the lead to 8 points with a penalty, but Menager hit the Black Ferns nest at the second try to complete the stand.

Further drama would come when Taumata collided with tall forward Agate Sokat, who was spotted by the TV match official before the live feed.

Drouin’s shot from about 30 yards out was successful, leaving France in agony as Black Ferns midfielder Kendra Coxage flicked the ball over as the home crowd cheered.

Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Directed by Peter Rutherford

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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