George scores hat-trick as England beat Georgia

Hooker Jamie George’s hat-trick helped England to a comfortable six-try victory against Georgia in their first match at Twickenham since March.

Flanker Jack Willis opened the scoring in a dream start to his debut, before George went over twice in mauls.

Elliot Daly added a fourth before half-time after an impressive break in midfield from Jonathan Joseph.

George completed his hat-trick with a replica of his first two scores before Dan Robson darted over.

England are now top of their Autumn Nations Cup pool and have two more group games against Ireland and Wales before facing a yet-to-be-determined opponent from Pool B to decide final placings.

England had not played at Twickenham since their Six Nations defeat of Wales eight months ago, before coronavirus brought rugby to a standstill.

With the stands empty, all the pressure was on the players to give an entertaining performance to make up for the lack of atmosphere in South-West London.

So it looked promising when captain Owen Farrell sent a cross-field kick to Jonny May, but the wing knocked it on to miss out on the chance of an early score.

The Georgians held off England heroically, rewarded with cheers from their replacements’ bench rather than 80,000 at Twickenham, but Willis finally found his way across after 15 minutes.

The 23-year-old’s first cap had been given plenty of column inches before the match and he completed the perfect debut narrative as he drove his legs, twisted and turned to make his way across the tryline.

A lack of fans was not the only change at Twickenham. English rugby edged its way into the 21st century as recent number one Head & Heart played out to celebrate the try, with the usual Sweet Caroline soundtrack absent.

England’s backline stalled as Georgia continued to put up a good fight, but George eventually crossed at the back of a maul after an England line-out in the corner.

Head coach Eddie Jones had spoken all week about England’s tactical discipline being more important than fireworks against their tier-two opponents and his side continued to do the basics right.

The third try mirrored the second as the maul rolled on and George crossed again.

Things took a more exciting turn as Joseph, on the wing for the day but told he had free rein going into the game, broke through in the midfield.

He sent the ball right and Daly was at the end of the line to sprint over for his score. That was Joseph’s final play of the match as he limped off and was replaced by Joe Marchant. (Courtesy BBC)