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Dublin: 4 °C Saturday 14 December, 2019
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Corkman Quill red-carded as England overpower USA

The former Dolphin back row is the first player to be sent off in this tournament.

England 45

USA 7

TWO GAMES DOWN, 10 points on the board and 11 tries scored. England are ticking over nicely in this World Cup and they will be top of Pool D when they next take to the field against Argentina on Saturday 5 October.

Eddie Jones’ side came close to ‘nilling’ their opponents, their copybook blemished only by Bryce Campbell’s frenetic counter-attack score in the 82nd minute. The northern hemisphere giants amassed 80% territory and forced their way to six tries before Cork native John Quill was issued the first red card of this World Cup.

The former Dolphin man was issued the marching orders inside the last 10 minutes, a TMO review showed his shoulder clatter into the jaw of Owen Farrell after the Saracens star had dipped to reach for a loose pass in his own 22.

While their only score of the game arrived late, the Eagles showed plenty of intent throughout but were constantly thwarted by a solid English defence and a plan to turn the opponent and relentlessly squeeze them in the 22.

George Ford dotted down the first of England’s seven tires after just six minutes, sneaking under the posts after carries from Billy Vunipola and Joe Launchbury kept the Chariot rolling forward.

England’s set-piece grew in dominance as the contest wore on and Vunipola and Luke Cowan-Dickie both claimed tries on the back of efficient rolling mauls to give England a 19-0 advantage at the interval.

The lead was extended and bonus point secured seven minutes after the restart as Jonathan Joseph broke the line and spun out of contact in the American 22. He was hauled down just short of the line, but a quick recycle made it impossible to stop Joe Cokanasiga as a one-out runner.

england-v-usa-pool-c-2019-rugby-world-cup-kobe-misaki-stadium Source: Adam Davy

Ruaridh McConnochie and Lewis Ludlam both grabbed first international tries as England’s power persisted and the bodies in white jerseys withered in fatigue. 

The underdogs were running on empty, but desperate to put a score on the board. Unfortunately, their attacking rally was brought to a shuddering halt with Quill’s red card.

Cokanasiga rounded off the rout five minutes later, but the 14 men still kept their head up in attack and Dubliner AJ MacGinty – the second of four Irish-born players on the field for the USA after Dylan Fawsitt and Paul Mullen came off the bench -  was central to the frenetic late counter-attack that eventually yielded a try for Campbell.

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Sean Farrell

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