Helen Richardson-Walsh scored her second goal of the tournament, and 25th goal for England, from close range at the end of the third quarter to help seal the win.
Italy’s organised defence looked like it would keep England out but a bit of magic from Bristol-born, Lily Owsley won them a penalty corner in the second-half. However Alex Danson’s effort went wide to the disbelief of the crowd.
A yellow card was handed to Giuliana Ruggieri in the final minute and England took advantage as Nicola White forced one home from close range to secure the win.
Danny Kerry’s side face unbeaten Germany in their final Pool B game tomorrow at 7:30pm live on the BBC Red Button and the BBC Sport Website.