Patricia Garcia turned in a stellar performance as Spain retained the Rugby Europe Women’s Championship with an emphatic 54-0 win against the Netherlands in bright, sunny conditions in Madrid.
Las Leonas’ experienced half-back scored a hat-trick and converted all but one of her side’s eight tries for a 29-point haul.
The Netherlands gave it a real go in the opening exchanges but failed to convert that pressure into points and it was left to Garcia to open the scoring in the ninth minute.
Second-row Anna Puig followed her over the whitewash and flanker Paula Medin crossed for try number three while the Netherlands were down to 14 players following a yellow card to full-back Willemijn Ter-Avest on 32 minutes.
After the teams turned around with the score at 19-0 to Spain, Media finished off a good team try in the 42nd minute, just before the Dutch were restored to their full complement of players.
Replacement forward Maika Brust added a fifth try before Garcia ran in two more tries to complete her hat-trick and add further gloss to the win.
Flanker Olivia Fresneda scored the final try in the 71st minute with Garcia rounding off the scoring and a highly competent display of goal-kicking with her seventh conversion.
The result of the match did not affect the Women’s World Rugby Rankings due to the large points differential between the sides. Spain stay ninth with the Netherlands in 14th place.
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