Six Nations: England thrash France 44-8 to secure win at Twickenham

Mathieu Bastareaud

By halftime, England had a bonus-point fourth try.

A penalty try and a touchdown for Owen Farrell chasing his own kick put the game to bed early in the second half as France did not look remotely like mounting any sort of comeback. 'We're going to have to be at our absolute best.

The half-backs, Morgan Parra and Camille Lopez will start together again while Antoine Dupont will take Baptiste Serin's place on the bench.

Only England and Wales have won their first two matches - England far more impressively - which perfectly sets up their showdown in the next round in two weeks in Cardiff.

It was their second-highest margin of victory over the French, a point shy of their 37-0 win in 1911.

Wales are second with eight log points, having beaten France in Paris (24-19) and Italy in Rome (26-15).

"It is a hard game when you get points in front because you can get seduced by the scoreboard and you start doing things you wouldn't normally, but we kept our discipline and stuck to the game plan", added the 59-year-old Australian.

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The Leicester Tigers flier showed his finishing prowess as he scored the first three of England's six tries as they took the honours in Le Crunch.

Just after the quarter mark he had a second, this time showing his feet to evade opposite number Damian Penaud to score in the same corner.

"I think when you put yourself in a position where after 30 minutes you've got a bonus point against a top team you've done pretty well", he added.

France were left reeling by England's kick-chase tactic in the first half of their 44-8 thrashing at Twickenham, according to Les Bleus captain Guilhem Guirado.

A great run by Yoann Huget sent Panaud over for France but they then immediately failed, yet again, to deal with a huge Farrell up and under and prop Kyle Sinckler spun a pass to Slade to dance over for a 30-8 halftime lead.

They stretched that with a penalty try after Gael Fickou dragged down Ashton as he bore down on another kick through by Slade. I'm most of all disappointed with what happened in the first half. Jones said this week that Sunday's game would have no bearing on the teams' key pool meeting at the World Cup later this year in Japan, but there is no question which side will start that game with the greater belief.

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