Emily Tuttosi recorded a hat-trick for Canada against Japan ©Getty Images

Canada started the women's Rugby World Cup in flying form by thrashing Japan as Pool B rivals Italy sealed a victory over the United States in Whangārei in New Zealand.

The Canadians, who are ranked third in the world, crushed their opponents 41-5 at the Northland Events Centre.

Paige Farriers scored the first try within just two minutes for Canada but Maki Takano replied almost instantly to level the match.

The floodgates soon opened with Emily Tuttosi bagging a try before Brianna Miller sealed a conversion as well as a try.

The pair each scored another try to round off the half.

Tuttosi completed her hat-trick before Mikiela Nelson got in on the act, as Canadian skipper Sophie de Goede converted on both attempts.

"It was a good game for us, we started strongly and we know that we can build from here," de Goede said.

"We have worked a lot on our rolling maul and we hope it will be a weapon for us during the rest of the competition.

"Credit to Japan, they made it difficult for us and they are an improving side for sure."

Meanwhile, Italy recovered from an early setback to beat the US 22-10.

Hallie Taufoou put the Americans in front inside just four minutes before Vittoria Ostuni Minuzzi broke free to tie the match.

Michela Sillari made the only conversion of the game to ensure the world number five side were an inch stronger at the half-time break.

Despite Jenny Kronish's efforts to get something from the match, Aura Muzzo scored a brace and Maria Magatti added a fourth try to seal the victory for the Italians.

In Pool A, Wales edged Scotland 18-15 with Keira Bevan's 86th minute penalty proving to the difference.

Megan Gaffney made two tries to top score for Scotland.