Harlequins Ladies Rachael Burford and Leanne Riley ran in two of the eight tries for England as the Red Roses completed a stunning second Six Nations victory on Saturday.
Playing at their club’s home ground The Stoop, their tries were the icing on the cake for the Quins and England fans as England thrashed Wales 52-0 in front of a 4,000 crowd that included RFU patron Prince Harry.
Harlequins Ladies’ captain Burford said: “I’m thrilled with that performance at our club home.
“When the Red Roses are playing on the international stage, we can show the crowd at The Stoop what great entertainment high-quality women’s rugby is, and I’m proud to be a part of that with three of my Harlequins teammates.
“We’re looking forward to continuing our success and picking up many more fans along the way.
“I’m excited to be part of both national and club teams that are moving to increase awareness of the women’s game and challenge perceptions.”
FLYING QUIN: Harlequins’ Abbie Scott
The support of the crowd was a taste of things to come for Quins players Burford, Abbie Scott, Riley and Vickii Cornborough as well as Richmond’s Red Rose Rowena Burnfield, who could return to The Stoop on Saturday March 10 for a scintillating derby clash between Quins and Richmond in the Tyrrells Premier 15s
This weekend, Quins Ladies managed without their star Red Roses as a young team bounced back from a narrow loss to Bristol with a bonus-point 31-22 win over DMP Sharks.
The Teesiders managed to secure an early 10-point lead in the rescheduled match before Harlequins responded with three tries before the break to give them the edge at half time.
Two crucial second-half tries from Kiwi prop Aldora Itunu gave Quins the bonus point win despite a late rally from the hosts who scored an 80th minute consolatory try.
The win puts Harlequins Ladies 11 points clear of Wasps FC Ladies in second place and five points behind leaders Saracens Women.
With a month to go before Quins Ladies welcome Richmond to The Stoop in the penultimate fixture of the league, Quins will be looking to build on their win when they take on Worcester Valkyries at Surrey Sports Park on Saturday.
Richmond meanwhile will be planning a comeback from their 41-0 humbling by Saracens when they host Firwood Waterloo Ladies on the Sunday.
Both teams are chasing a top-four finish to qualify for the play-offs.
The match against Richmond marks a statement of intent by Harlequins Rugby, who are bidding to make history and welcome a record crowd for a women’s club game to The Stoop.
The fixture will take place just two days after International Women’s Day and Harlequins Rugby will be supporting the 2018 Press for Progress theme by taking a stand for parity and equality in the world of sport.
Co-coach for Harlequins Ladies Gary Street, who led England Women to 2014 Women’s Rugby World Cup victory, said: “The women’s game is in great shape and we want to keep building on that and pushing it towards parity with the men’s game, changing people’s perceptions of the sport.
“It’s essential we capitalise on the support of England Women and pull more fans into the women’s game. I’m proud we have those ambitions.”
Tickets for the game on March 10 are priced £10 for adults and £5 for juniors and can be purchased online from tickets.quins.co.uk or by calling the ticket office on 020 8410 6000.
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