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Women's Six Nations: England's dominance frustrating – Maggie Alfonsi

Women's Six Nations: England's dominance frustrating – Maggie Alfonsi

video caption, Women's Six Nations 2024: Defending champions England beat Scotland 46-0

England's 46-0 thrashing away to Scotland is demoralizing to the “integrity” of the Women's Six Nations, says former player Maggie Alfonsi.

The Red Roses scored eight tries and still dominated every aspect of the red card received by Amy Cockayne in the second half.

England leads the standings and is on its way to winning its sixth consecutive title after obtaining three points from its three matches.

“It's very frustrating when the results are like this because there is no risk,” Alfonsi told BBC One.

England played for almost half an hour with 14 men in sweltering conditions in Edinburgh after Cockayne was sent off for receiving two yellow cards.

But Scotland were unable to impose any pressure with the extra player and failed to score a point.

The Red Roses scored 24 tries in three matches, earning 140 points and conceding just 10.

Former England striker Alfonsi added: “The big focus has to be on how we support other countries to make sure we close the gap.

“Even as an England fan, I want to close that gap. I don't want to see big results, I want to see close games.

“It's about the integrity and quality of competition, and we want different teams to win this tournament.”

Statistics confirm Alfonsi's feelings:

  • England have won every women's Six Nations title since 2019, including four Grand Slams
  • England are unbeaten in 27 Six Nations matches
  • Scotland have not beaten England since 1999
  • The last team other than England to win the Six Nations was France in 2018
  • Ireland are the only other team to have won the Six Nations in 2013 and 2015

Scotland have improved since being awarded full-time professional contracts for the first time in December 2022 and won the WXV2 title during a run of seven straight wins before losing to France in this year's Six Nations.

Injured Scottish number eight, Jade Kunkel, says the players need time to continue to develop in order to bridge the gap with the Red Roses.

“If you look at 2013, Ireland were Grand Slam winners and a difficult team to play against,” Kunkel told BBC One.

“Then England got professional contracts and rocketed past everyone, and they had that for a long period of time.

“That's not to take credit for the depth and standard of the players, and you're starting to see some improvement now with the arrival of professional contracts in Scotland – but it's only been a year, so there's still a way to go.

“You can't speed up this process – and England continues to build. It shows no signs of plateauing.”

However, former England hooker Brian Moore says England can only focus on their own development and it is not their “fault” that there is a gap between the other two sides.

“England have to play to their own standards,” Moore told BBC One.

“If you want to judge them on their high standards, there were moments of inaccuracy that they could improve on, but the conditions were particularly bad, especially in the first half, and they dealt with it and came away with a big win.

He added, “It is not their fault that other countries are not living up to the required level, and this requires more work on their part. You either have competition or you don't.”

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