Scarratt and England braced for battle of attrition against France
By Ben Hart, Sportsbeat
Leicester's Emily Scarratt has warned the Red Roses to prepare for a battle of attrition like no other in their Grand Slam showdown with France.
Red Roses and Loughborough Lightning legend Scarratt has been involved in several Championship deciders and feels this has the makings to be the most dramatic yet.
With both sides having won their first four matches of this year’s Championship, the destination of this year's title will be decided when the two fierce rivals clash on Saturday.
More than 53,000 tickets have been sold for the fixture - the first standalone women’s game at Twickenham - and Scarratt admits she was surprised to see the record attendance for a women’s international fixture smashed so convincingly.
“It's unreal, when it was announced that the ambition was to try and sell out Twickenham for 2025 I thought, 'that could be a stretch,'” said Scarratt.
“Then we went to New Zealand and Eden Park was sold out for the World Cup final and I'm so excited to see what the final figure is for this game.
“It's an amazing opportunity for the girls and for our game because it's the home of English rugby, that's where you want to play and you want a packed crowd, you don't want it to feel empty.
“The Sugababes will be playing at halftime and as somebody who grew up in that era, I'm absolutely buzzing so I think the whole spectacle - and with the Grand Slam on the line - could make for a great day.”
England will be without the 108-cap and former World Player of the Year, who has not featured for her country since last year's World Cup final due to injury.
Gutted to be missing out, Scarratt is ready to play her part and cheer on her team from the sidelines, expecting France to be fuelled by past trauma as they look to spoil the Twickenham party.
“I think it's going to be an absolute battle of attrition, it's going to be super physical,” added Scarratt.
“It always is against France, and they'll definitely be a bit of an edge to it, there always is in games like that.
“We’ve played France a lot in the last five or so years and all of the results have been super close but we've always been on the right side of them, certainly for the last few meetings, so France will want to change that record.
“They are a brilliant side and hopefully the game will be a fitting ending to a great tournament.”
O2 and the RFU have co-funded a half-time performance by the Sugababes for the Red Roses v France Women’s Six Nations match on Saturday 29 April. For tickets, visit https://www.eticketing.co.uk/rfu/Events