Power, pace and excellent handling were key to an emphatic victory for France over Scotland in the women’s 6 Nations international played at Hawthornden, Lasswade.
Offensively the visiting side’s key weapon was the driving maul which they used to great effect. In defence their robust tackling made it difficult for the home-side to gain territory and denied Scotland any real opportunity to secure quality possession.
Maxton, said: “I am disappointed with the way that we started the match. We knew the French were going to be physical and we had to match that, but too often in the first half they bullied us off the ball.
“We will look and see how we can work on things before next week’s match in Wales, but we cannot keep starting matches slowly.
“The players perhaps have to have a bit more belief in themselves and their abilities because in the second-half when they mixed it with the French they showed what they can do.”
Prop Heather Lockhart (pictured), winning her 70th cap, won the player of the match award but the game very much belonged to France.
Three minutes had gone before France took the lead through right wing Marion Lievre. Back-row Safi N’Diaye added two before the break, with hooker Gaelle Mignot, flanker Assa Koite and left-wing Camillie Grassineau grabbing the others.
Scotland competed well early in the second half but again the power play of the French proved too hot to handle for the plucky Scots.
Seventeen minutes into the second-half France opened their second-half account with a try from replacement Lise Arricastre.
The visitors added four more tries before the final whistle through centre Shanon Izar, full-back Chistelle Leduff, back-row Koumiba Djossouvi and replacement Jessy Tremouliere.
Scotland team: Steph Johnston (Worcester); Annabel Sergeant (Richmond),Gillian Inglis (Melrose), Laura Steven (Murrayfield Wanderers),Katy Green (Darlington Mowden Park Sharks); Tanya Griffith (RHC Cougars),9. Sarah Law (Murrayfield Wanderers); Heather Lockhart (Hillhead-Jordanhill),Lindsey Smith (Hillhead-Jordanhill),Tracy Balmer CAPTAIN (Worcester), Deborah McCormack (Richmond),Emma Wassell (Murrayfield Wanderers), Ruth Slaven (Murrayfield Wanderers), Tess Forsberg (Richmond) and Jade Konkel (Hillhead-Jordanhill)
Replacements: Lana Skeldon (Melrose), Karen Dunbar (Watsonians), Lisa Robertson (Murrayfield Wanderers), Rachael Cook (Murrayfield Wanderers), Louise Dalgliesh (RHC Cougars), Lisa Martin (Murrayfield Wanderers), Megan Gaffney (Hillhead-Jordanhill) and Sarah Smith (Hillhead-Jordanhill)
France team: Christell Leduff; Marion Lievre, Shanon Izar, Majorie Mayans, Camille Grassineau; Sandrine Agricole, Jennifer Troncy; Helene Ezanno, Gaelle Mignot, Elodie Portaries, Marine Denadia, Assa Koita, Koumiba Djossouvi, Safi N'Diaye and Coumba Tombe Diallo.
Replacements: Laetitia Salles, Julie Duval, Lise Arricastre, Sandra Rabier, Laetitia Grand, Elodie Poublan, Jessy Tremouliere and Yanna Rivoalen.