Rugby | England defeat Australia to reach last four

England have beaten Australia 40-16 to reach the semi-finals of the Rugby World Cup.

Tries from Jonny May (two), Kyle Sinckler and Anthony Watson sent the English on their way to an impressive win over the Wallabies at Oita Bank Dome.

England will now play the winners of the clash between Ireland and New Zealand in the last four.

Eddie Jones’ men led 17-9 at half time after two tries in quick succession from May.

It was Australia who made the stronger start, enjoying the majority of possession in the opening 10 minutes, and they drew first blood.

Christian Lealiifano kicked the Wallabies into the lead with a precise penalty in the 12th minute.

England hit back six minutes later when May crossed for his first try on his 50th international appearance; the winger going over in the corner after a fine pass from Tom Curry in a fluid England attacking move.

Owen Farrell added the conversion, before May recorded his second try in a matter of minutes in the 21st minute.

David Pocock’s pass was intercepted by Curry, with Henry Slade eventually measuring a kick into the corner for May to run on to.

Another Farrell conversion extended England’s lead to 14-3.

Lealiifano and Farrell then traded penalies, with the former nailing another penalty late in the half to make it 17-9 at the interval.

Despite having just 40% of the possession, England ran into the dressing rooms with an eight-point advantage.

The second half began in thrilling fashion.

Australia made the perfect start, scoring their first try through Marika Koroibete just three minutes after the restart.

Koroibete crashed over the whitewash following a sublime pass from Reece Hodge, who flung the ball out wide to the advancing winger.

Lealiifano added a conversion, but England responded instantly.

Within two minutes, Kyle Sinckler barreled over the try-line for the Europeans’ third try of the quarter-final.

Another Farrell conversion made it 24-16.

Farrell’s 51st-minute penalty then stretched England’s lead to 11 points.

Ben Youngs then had a try rightly ruled out by TMO, before yet another accurate penalty from Farrell made it 30-16 in the 66th minute.

Farrell registered his fourth penalty in the 73rd minute, maintaining his 100% record from placed balls in the match.

England bagged try number four with four minutes left on the clock.

Watson intercepted Kurtley Beale’s pass before sprinting over the line to round off a superb result for Jones’ men.

Farrell converted to take his individual tally to 20 points.

A minute later, Koroibete had a try ruled out by the TMO, with replays showing there was a forward pass from Taniela Tupou in the buildup.

England will await the winners of Ireland v New Zealand, with the semi-final scheduled for October 26th in Yokohama.