England toughed out the French resistance to triumph 23-13 at Twickenham.
England overcame the resistance of a stubborn France side at Twickenham in the RBS Six Nations Championship, and remain on course for the Grand Slam in 2013.
France controlled the first half, with only Owen Farrell’s kicking keeping the English in the game, and a statistic of 15 missed tackles for the Whites in the opening period told its own story.
Four of those came during the first try – a stunning solo effort from Wesley Fofana. Brilliant footwork saw him breeze past the England defence with ease, who were left grasping at air instead of able to bring him down.
At the break it was 9-10, and France deserved their slender lead.
England roared back in the second period, taking the lead with another Farrell penalty to bring the score to 12-10.
Not long afterwards, Manu Tuilagi pounced on a loose ball to break and score for England. 17-10, and Farrell had the opportunity to convert to give England a nine point lead.
He could not do so, and not long afterwards had to depart the field with what looked like a groin strain.
France closed to within four points thanks to Frederic Michalak, but as the game wore on their stamina left them – as did their discipline.
The French gave away a series of penalties in the final fifteen minutes, and instead of a close finish England were able to stretch their lead.
The game finished 23-13.
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