Hat-trick hero Amy Cokayne paid tribute to retiring teammate Shaunagh Brown following Harlequins’ thrilling 48-14 victory over Bristol Bears in the Premier 15s.
Cokayne crossed the whitewash three times in the first half to hand Quins a late Christmas present as Scotland’s Jade Konkel-Roberts and England fullback Ellie Kildunne both added to the score.
Brown announced her retirement a week prior to the match and waved farewell to her a professional rugby career with five minutes to go, Cokayne praising the England forward for a remarkable career.
“I really respect her decision to end things on her terms,” she said.
“And what a way to end it, at home at a big game like we have today.
“She’s been at Quins from the start and was still out there today, doing what she does best and running around.”
Brown played her part in a strong first-half performance as Red Roses hooker Cokayne grabbed three tries before the break, claiming the first after an early frustration for Freya Aucken who saw her try chalked off for a forward pass.
Sensational play by Kildunne and Emily Scott wrapped up a strong first half as Quins led by 29 unanswered points.
Edwards extended the lead from a short-range try after coming off the bench in the second half before Kildunne dotted down for her own on 73 minutes.
Cokayne applauded her team’s dazzling display of talent as they corrected the errors made last time out in their 27-0 Premier 15s defeat to Exeter Chiefs.
She said: “The time of year it is, it’s always nice to get a win as it almost feels like you’ve given up a bit of your Christmas for this game.
“We were disappointed with our performance against Exeter as we didn’t put on a showcase or make a good representation of ourselves, so we definitely made those wrongs right today.
“Especially for our forward pack to function and play some really good rugby.
“We’ve got some amazing backs and today we managed to get them the ball cleanly and we didn’t give away too many penalties.”