(Reuters) – England’s record-setting Red Roses are only human and Canada will enjoy being the underdogs when the two sides meet in the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup next weekend, captain Sophie de Goede said.
England cruised into the last four of the tournament with a 29th straight win in Auckland on Sunday and are clear favorites to claim a third World Cup title on November 12.
Standing in their way to the finals is a Canadian side who de Goede says will not come to Eden Park on Saturday to add to their tally.
“Everybody, we’re all just rugby players,” said the eighth wicket after Sunday’s 32-11 win over the USA.
“I don’t know if there is one recipe (to stop England). But it is worth remembering that we are all human. Robots don’t play there. We’ll do everything we can to give them a chance to cash in next week.”
Canada were thrashed 51-12 in their last meeting with England in November 2021, but de Goede said they have made great strides this season after missing the better part of two years of Test rugby due to the COVID-19 pandemic .
“I think every game we get better, every game we go into, we analyze and we get smarter,” she added.
“We already know we’re athletic, but it’s important for us to improve our game management, our tactical awareness, and we’re improving that with every game.
“We know we’re the underdogs going into this game against England, but it’s a place we like to be as Canadians. We are very happy to go to battle.”
De Goede, whose parents both captained Canada at the Rugby World Cup, said she and her teammates will be doing a lot of homework ahead of Saturday’s clash.
“Their game management is a strength,” she said of England. “We will have to do a massive analysis, not of individual players, but of how they play as a whole. And it’s going to be a challenge for us this week, but I’m excited to do it.”
(Reporting by Nick Mulvaney; Editing by Peter Rutherford)