Rugby World Cup: England ‘gutted’ after the loss but did not blame Lydia Thompson’s red card | Rugby League News
New Zealand won 34–31 to win the Rugby World Cup for the sixth time and end England’s 30-match winning streak; Lydia Thompson sent off for Red Roses in first half of incredible final in Auckland
Last Updated: 11/12/22 11:04 am
England captain Sarah Hunter believes the Red Roses can be proud of their World Cup performance and insists Lydia Thompson’s red card cannot be blamed for their “ruthless” defeat to New Zealand in the match. final.
The Red Roses saw their 30-game winning streak culminate in an epic showdown against the home team and the defending champions of the tournament, as they were beaten 34-31 to a crowd. tickets sold out at Eden Park.
England spent more than an hour with 14 players after Thompson was sent off for a reckless tackle, although Simon Middleton’s team took the lead before being beaten by Black Ferns in the final. Fifth World Cup.
“I was gutted,” Hunter said. “I’m very proud of the team, we fought hard. We had our backs against the wall for 60 minutes but we never gave up.
“A result that doesn’t define the squad we are as humans. Hopefully we’ve inspired the next generation back home and given them something to be proud of.
“Sport is cruel. Credit to New Zealand, they found a way and came home as worthy champions. We didn’t leave any stones, we left everything. things on the pitch. We’re hurting.”
How does the red card affect England?
England got off to a dream start and took a 14-0 lead after early efforts from Ellie Kildunne and Amy Cokayne, only for New Zealand to be given a way back into the game in the 18th minute with Thompson sent off.
“It [the red card] Doesn’t help,” Middleton admitted. “It definitely affects the way the game is played. You look at the number of points they scored immediately on the flank – it was difficult to defend. We have to adapt, but when you’re 14 and you’re covered in one area it weakens you in another.
“Good teams spot you and they spot us a little bit, so the tough game gets a lot harder, but we took it down on the last inning and the game was at equilibrium position when the whistle is turned off.
“You cannot overstate how proud I and the rest of the staff are of the players and how they should be proud of themselves. To achieve that, with a lot of challenges going on throughout. game, is huge and that shows what the lineup is all about.”
The Red Roses fought bravely and held a tight 2-point advantage until Ayesha Leti-I’iga scored the winning goal nine minutes ago, Hunter adamant that Thompson had the full backing of the team. her England teammates.
“Lydia is injured, she’s a great person, a great player and in moments like these we need to be with her,” Hunter said. “One thing is for sure – that’s not why we lost the game.
“We’re a unified team and we’re not going to point fingers or identify a single person in the final result. We’ve brought her back, we’ll take care of her, we’ll put our arms around her. take her and make sure she’s okay.
“In games, people are sent off and the teams still win. I don’t think that necessarily determines the outcome. It makes things more difficult, but that’s not the point. The only thing that kept us from getting the results we wanted tonight.”
Positive to have for Red Roses?
Middleton had said during World Cup preparations that anything less than a win for England would be a disappointment, but the head coach later said he had seen his team’s progress. throughout the tournament.
“It’s an overwhelming feeling, how proud we are of the players,” said Middleton. “They gave everything. Not just, tonight but for 50, 51 days. They gave nothing but their absolute best every day.”
“In terms of our goal, it’s [disappointing not to win]. Talk to any player and they will say the exact same thing. But we won on the big fronts.
“We want to leave these shores with a better team than when we arrived. We’ve given 100%. We lost tonight but won big in the last 51 days.”