DUBLIN, IRELAND — Canada’s senior women’s team fell 20-10 to the New Zealand Black Ferns Wednesday in a matchup of the two best ranked teams in the world. Canada got second half tries from Magali Harvey and Laura Russell but three tries and the boot of Kendra Cocksedge propelled the Black Ferns to victory.
“We weren’t consistent today,” head coach Francois Ratier said. “We were able to scores tries but we gave away soft penalties. We were courageous, we never gave up but it just wasn’t enough today.”
After leading 8-0 at the interval thanks to a Cocksedge try and penalty, Canada came roaring back into the game as Harvey got her second try in as many games as she raced away to touch down after Latoya Blackwood had intercepted a Black Ferns pass.
However, New Zealand answered immediately as replacement forward Aotearoa Mata’u powered over from close range to push the Black Ferns’ lead to 15-5. Canada’s Brittany Waters was shown a yellow card in the 61st minute but the teams were back even just three minutes later as Eloise Blackwell was sent to the sin bin. Canada made the Black Ferns pay immediately as from the resulting lineout, Russell peeled off of a driving maul to touch down in the corner to cut the lead to 15-10 with 15 minutes to play.
But again New Zealand hit back right away. After Cocksedge’s penalty had missed, fullback Selica Winiata carved Canada apart to touch down in the 68th minute to seal the Black Ferns’ victory.
“We’re not happy,” captain Kelly Russell said. “We’re disappointed with the way we came out and played. We didn’t start playing our game until midway through the second half. The girls give it their all every minute of the game. We can’t ask for more. We just have to be more switched on when he hit the pitch.”
Canada returns to action on Saturday when they face reigning World Cup champions England at Twickenham. Broadcast details are still to be confirmed.