England beat New Zealand to triumph in Canada ©Getty Images

England claimed their first tournament victory this season as they thrashed New Zealand 31-14 in the final of the Canadian leg of the World Rugby Women's Sevens Series in Langford.

The Kiwis, the defending Canadian and overall champions, led 14-7 at one stage but the English fought back to lead 19-14 at the interval.

After the break they then pulled away with Alice Richardson and Jo Watmore’s tries putting the match out of New Zealand’s reach.

This was England's first victory since the American leg in 2013 and came after they had knocked out Australia - winners of every other tournament this season - 15-5 in the last four.

"I'm thrilled with the performance," said England captain Emily Scarratt.

"We knew that if we played the way we know we can, we could get to the final.

"It was a really tough match against New Zealand but we stuck to the system.

"The first half was ping-pong in terms of tries but we stuck to our systems and we've our reward now.

Australia beat France for bronze as they failed to win a tournament for the first time this season
Australia beat France for bronze as they failed to win a tournament for the first time this season ©Getty Images

"We've now got a few days off when we get home, as we're absolutely shattered after a back-to-back set of tournaments.

"But it's a great feeling."

New Zealand came through their semi-final 12-7 against France, who then lost 19-12 to Australia in the battle for bronze.

Host nation Canada, who progressed from the group stage with three victories without conceding a point - including a 5-0 win over England - went no further as France knocked them out 14-12 in the quarter-finals at the Westhills Stadium.

England hammered United States 29-7, while Australia saw off Spain 28-0 and New Zealand eased past Russia 43-0.

Australia still have a comfortable lead overall, with 76 points ahead of New Zealand on 64.

It means that only an unlikely scenario would see them miss out on being crowned as overall champions at the final leg of the Series in Clermont-Ferrand, France, on May 28 and 29.