Chris Ashton scores hat-trick as Barbarians beat England

Last Updated May 27 2018, 16:49Rugby Union
Chris Ashton dives over for a try
Chris Ashton dives over for a try

Chris Ashton plundered a hat-trick of tries as the Barbarians condemned England to an embarrassing fourth successive defeat by emerging 63-45 winners at Twickenham.

Ashton carried his record-breaking form for Toulon into his first appearance against the nation for whom he won 39 caps until departing for France last year, resigned to Eddie Jones' indifference.

The 31-year-old hopes to revive his England career in the future and this performance, albeit in a match where defending was low down both team's agendas, issued a reminder of his artistry as a finisher.

The chances largely dried up after he raced into the right corner for his third, celebrating with a second 'Ash Splash' of the afternoon, although in the final quarter he was denied for the second time by George Ford who had the beating of him for pace.

Chaotic and unpredictable, it was hard for Jones to draw any meaningful pointers from a non-cap international and first defeat in the fixture since 2014 that serves as the prelude to next month's tour to South Africa.

They were beaten 9-6 on the try count despite fielding seven regular Test team starters, all of whom were involved in the NatWest 6 Nations, and having been in camp for two weeks.

The experiment of playing Elliot Daly at full-back worked for as long as it lasted, Henry Trinder's concussion-enforced exit forcing him to slot in at outside centre where he was every bit as effective.

The decision to pick Mike Brown on the left wing was puzzling, however, Jones explaining it was to see if the Harlequins full-back can cover multiple positions at the World Cup and by the third minute he had his answer.

Josua Tuisova showed Brown a clean pair of heals to tee up Ashton for an extravagant finish and soon after the wing was over for his second after gathering Finn Russell's chip.

It would have been a hat-trick inside the opening 10 minutes had he not been caught by Ford after being given a clear run to the line by Tuisova, but England were in pieces and Victor Vito capitalised by spinning over from close range.

Daly stemmed the flow after an overlap was exploited and the frantic pace continued when hooker Jack Singleton charged through a hole before feeding Piers Francis the scoring pass.

Ashton's hat-trick arrived in the 25th minute, slick passing and movement providing the chance, before a slippery run from Daly ended when Zach Mercer crossed.

The score was levelled at the half-hour mark when Ford showed patience during a crab-like run and released Francis to score, but then Ashton turned provider by racing through a gap to send Russell over.

A weak tackle from Chris Robshaw waved Semi Radradra over for the Barbarians' sixth try, but a penalty by Ford and a Joe Launchbury try from close range reduced the gap between the rivals to four points.

Sitaleki Timani finished a daredevil team move before Greig Laidlaw popped up on the right wing to put the result beyond doubt, and the closing moments were lit up by tries from Jonny May and a second for Vito.

Related rugby union links

Most Read

Paper Talk: Ruben Neves, Ademola Lookman and Roberto Firmino all feature1

Monday's Paper Talk

Premier League giants consider £60m Ruben Neves bid, £22m offered for Lookman, according to the back pages.

Celebration time for Rob Cross in Brisbane (PDC/Richard Walker)2

Cross claims Brisbane crown

Rob Cross became the sixth winner in as many World Series events in 2018 as he defeated Michael van Gerwen 11-6 in the final of the Brisbane Darts Masters.

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action3

Monday's racing preview

Cowboy Soldier is Keith Hamer's best bet at Windsor and he has a tip for every race in the UK and Ireland.

Our best bets for Crystal Palace's clash with Liverpool4

Crystal Palace v Liverpool tips

Monday Night Football returns for the 2018/19 season as Crystal Palace welcome Liverpool. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

Find out who our team are backing ahead of today's racing5

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

David Ord heads to Thirsk for his best Monday bet with a Saeed bin Suroor runner expected to defy top weight.

Most Read

Paper Talk: Ruben Neves, Ademola Lookman and Roberto Firmino all feature1

Monday's Paper Talk

Premier League giants consider £60m Ruben Neves bid, £22m offered for Lookman, according to the back pages.

Celebration time for Rob Cross in Brisbane (PDC/Richard Walker)2

Cross claims Brisbane crown

Rob Cross became the sixth winner in as many World Series events in 2018 as he defeated Michael van Gerwen 11-6 in the final of the Brisbane Darts Masters.

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action3

Monday's racing preview

Cowboy Soldier is Keith Hamer's best bet at Windsor and he has a tip for every race in the UK and Ireland.

Our best bets for Crystal Palace's clash with Liverpool4

Crystal Palace v Liverpool tips

Monday Night Football returns for the 2018/19 season as Crystal Palace welcome Liverpool. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

Find out who our team are backing ahead of today's racing5

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

David Ord heads to Thirsk for his best Monday bet with a Saeed bin Suroor runner expected to defy top weight.

Racing Tips

Check out our free horse racing selections and preview for today's action

Monday's racing preview

Cowboy Soldier is Keith Hamer's best bet at Windsor and he has a tip for every race in the UK and Ireland.

Find out who our team are backing ahead of today's racing

Sporting Life: Daily Nap

David Ord heads to Thirsk for his best Monday bet with a Saeed bin Suroor runner expected to defy top weight.

Get your bets on!

Our best bets

Check out all of our available betting tips and previews of the forthcoming sporting action.

Next Race Off
10:05 Hyderabad
1
(6)
Rahil
J: Gopal Singh
4
(3)
Trump Girl
J: Akshay Kumar
3
(9)
Shaquille
J: Suraj Narredu

Football Tips

Our best bets for Crystal Palace's clash with Liverpool

Crystal Palace v Liverpool tips

Monday Night Football returns for the 2018/19 season as Crystal Palace welcome Liverpool. Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets.

Get your bets on!

Our best bets

Check out all of our available betting tips and previews of the forthcoming sporting action.

The scene from Glorious Goodwood

Sporting Life: Tipping record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in August 2018.