Arundell scores five tries as England thrash Chile

Arundell scores five tries as England thrash Chile

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Henry Arundell
Arundell’s five tries helped England to their biggest win of this Rugby World Cup campaign
England: (31) 71
Tries: Arundell 5, Dan 2, Rodd, Smith 2, Willis Cons: Farrell 8
Chile: (0) 0

Wing Henry Arundell scored five tries as England sliced apart Pool D’s weakest opposition to all but qualify for the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals.

The 20-year-old’s clutch of scores against Chile matches the most scored by an England men’s player in a Test and moves him to the top of the tournament try-scoring standings in his first appearance of the campaign.

England, as expected, were far too strong for the spirited, but limited Chile, as their forward power and backline edge had the Rugby World Cup debutants in near-constant retreat.

While Arundell’s feat will steal the headlines, the pick of their 11 tries came from Marcus Smith, who raced on to his own kick after a searing break from his new role as a full-back.

England will complete their pool-stage campaign in a fortnight’s time against Samoa, and could even be assured of their last-eight place before then should other results work their way.

This performance will give coach Steve Borthwick plenty to consider during England’s break week as an exciting backline, containing warp-speed Arundell and Smith’s defence-breaking agility, bristled with threat, admittedly against weak opposition.

Owen Farrell didn’t miss a beat on his return to the team after a four-match ban and England combined all three of their main playmakers to good effect – Farrell, Smith and George Ford – after the latter was introduced off the bench in the 55th minute.

Chile’s underdogs overpowered

Marcus Smith scores for England against Chile
Smith was making his first senior start at full-back for either club or country

Chile are dwarfed by England in terms of history and resources. England have made the quarter-finals at least, in all but one of 10 Rugby World Cups, while Chile have qualified for the tournament only once. Their squad is drawn from only four clubs and half of it is the product of just two schools in Santiago. In total, Chile has a player pool numbering about 28,000, while England’s is in excess of 1.9m.

But the underdogs, who scored the first tries in their pool-stage defeats by Japan and Samoa, started strongly again, holding England at arm’s length for most of the first quarter.

Stubborn in defence and slick with the ball, they even threatened the England line on a couple of gleeful breaks downfield off turnover ball.

Second row Clemente Saavedra cantered into space, centre Matias Garafulic pinged a 50:22 deep into England territory and, for a moment, South American chants drowned out Swing Low Sweet Chariot.

But, as in their previous encounters in the tournament, Chile burned bright, but briefly.

England’s pressure told as Arundell sauntered into the corner from a floated mispass from Farrell on 19 minutes to start the flurry of scores.

Four minutes later, Theo Dan, making his first England start, burrowed over from the back of a driven maul before Arundell scored an almost identical try to his first, gathering another Farrell pass to dot down in the same corner, and Bevan Rodd barged over from close in.

Up until that point, Smith had played his unaccustomed full-back role to mixed reviews. His footwork had sparkled briefly in space, but he had also lobbed a pass over the head of Max Malins when the line was beckoning and misjudged a grubber kick for Arundell.

In the final play of the first half though he produced a showreel score, making full use of the extra space and time afforded by his new position.

He broke though the defence with a jet-heeled spurt of pace, before dropping the ball on to his instep, haring after his own kick, regathering and sliding in for a fine individual try on the stroke of half-time.

England piled on the points and pain after the interval.

Dan got his second try at the back of another advancing line-out, before Arundell completed his hat-trick by pouncing on a mis-fielded grubber kick.

The wing, who will move to Racing 92 and out of England consideration after this tournament, deftly chipped over Chile’s cover defence for his fourth before appearing on the shoulder of Smith for his fifth.

His tally matches that collected by Josh Lewsey in a landslide win over Uruguay in the 2003 Rugby World Cup and the five scored by Rory Underwood against Fiji in 1989.

There was still time for the impressive Smith to wriggle through and flanker Jack Willis to crash under the posts in the final attack of the game, even if Marc Ellis’ World Cup record of six tries in a match – scored in New Zealand’s 145-17 win over Japan in 1995 – remained out of Arundell’s reach.

Line-ups

England: Smith; Arundell, Daly, Lawrence, Malins; Farrell, Care; Rodd, Dan, Sinckler, Ribbans, Martin, Ludlam, Willis, Vunipola.

Replacements: Walker, Marler, Stuart, Chessum, Earl, Youngs, Ford, Marchant

Chile: Urroz; Game, D Saavedra, Garafulic, Velarde; Fernandez, B Videla; Lues, Bohme, Dittus, C Saavedra, Eissmann, Sigren (c), Silva, Escobar.

Replacements: Dussaillant, Lastra, Gurruchaga, Huete, Orchard, Martinez, Carvallo, Ayarza

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