England Women Sevens finished sixth in the second leg of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Dubai after losing to Russia in the fifth place play-off.
On day one England finished top of Pool B with victories over Australia, USA and China and progressed to the Cup quarter-final against Australia where they were defeated 12-27.
Deborah Fleming gave England an early head start after breaking the Australian line 28 seconds into the first half but it wasn’t long before the reigning world champions responded with scores through Charlotte Caslick, Ellia Green and Evania Pelite. England trailed by 10 points at the break.
A wide pass to Pelite set her up for her second as she dotted down for an easy score before she crossed again moments later for her hat trick, increasing the score to 7-27.
A late consolation score from Jess Breach closed the gap but it wasn’t enough for James Bailey’s side.
England bounced back to defeat Ireland 22-17 securing their spot in the fifth place play-off.
An early converted try for captain Abbie Brown gave England the head start which Holly Aitchison followed up moments later with a score of her own. Ireland fought back through tries from Hannah Tyrrell and Lucy Mulhall but England led by two points at the break.
Despite Tyrrell being sin binned Ireland slipped through the defence and dotted down again via Amee Leigh Murphy Crowe but England hit back immediately thanks to Ellie Kildunne who levelled the score at 12-12.
In a tense final phase Kildunne burst through Ireland’s defence to give England the lead and secure victory.
In their final game of the tournament England suffered a 7-12 loss to Russia.
Russia broke the deadlock with a converted score from Baizat Khamidova which put them 7-0 up at the break.
In the second half England responded through some beautiful teamwork between Aitchison and Kildunne who crossed for her third of the day to level the score.
Despite a huge physical effort from Jess Breach it wasn’t enough as Elena Zdronkova put her foot on the gas and darted for the whitewash, securing the win for Russia.
Fifth place play-off: England 7-12 Russia
Tries: Ellie Kildunne
Fifth place semi-final: England 22-17 Ireland
Tries: Abbie Brown, Holly Aitchison, Ellie Kildunne (2)
Cup quarter-final: England 12-27 Australia
Tries: Deborah Fleming, Jess Breach
Pool B results:
England 26-12 Australia
Tries: Abbie Brown, Emma Uren, Ellie Kildunne, Natasha Hunt
England 14-12 USA
Tries: Abbie Brown, Amy Wilson Hardy
England 38-0 China
Tries: Jess Breach (2), Amy Wilson Hardy, Abbie Brown, Deborah Fleming (2)
England Women Sevens squad:
Abbie Brown ©
Amy Wilson Hardy