England Women pipped to Six Nations title by France
England Women's bid for the Six Nations grand slam fell short on Friday night as they were beaten 17-12 by France at Stade de la Rabine.
Like their male counterparts, the women had headed to France hoping to make it five wins out of five, but unlike the men they also needed victory in this final fixture to win the Six Nations title.
Instead the French took that honour as Gaelle Mignot's second try of the night 10 minutes from time gave them the win.
England had led 7-5 at half-time on the back of Lydia Thompson's try, in which she broke four tackles to reach the corner before Amber Reed kicked the conversion.
But France captain Mignot replied and the hosts took the lead when a maul drove Audrey Forlani over and Camile Cabalou converted.
Tamara Taylor replied for England and the scores were tied when Reed's conversion kick struck the upright.
But with 10 minutes left, the French drove forward from a line-out and Mignot finished the move with what proved to be the winning try.
England had hoped to win their eighth grand slam, and first since 2012, but despite falling short coach Scott Bemand was proud of his side.
"It's a tough one to swallow," he said. "They have done everything asked of them, they showed character and commitment and tried to play our brand against a really tough French team.
"We have to regroup, go back, this group is going to continue to get better and will continue to evolve. They have a summer tour and we will dust ourselves off for that."
Eddie Jones' men will hope for better fortune when they face France in Paris seeking the grand slam, having claimed the Six Nations title last weekend.