Feb 01, 2015
London Welsh 15 Saracens 20
Ben Spencer scored 15 points in Saracens 15-20 win away to London Welsh in the LV=Cup in superb vistory for Joe Shaw's side.
An extremely youthful Saracens team edged a London Welsh side packed full of first team regulars that included former England centre's Olly Barkley and Tom May amongst their starting XV. Ben Spencer crossed for a first half try, with hooker Jared Saunders dotting down his sides other try as the north Londoner's stay top of Pool 1 of the LV=Cup.
In what was a pretty dismal first 40 minutes of LV=Cup rugby in front of the sparse crowd congregating for warmth inside the Kassam Stadium, the youthful Sarries side side frustrated a London Welsh team that included the majority of their first team regulars.
The home side, playing with a strong gust behind their backs edged into the lead with a well struck Tristan Roberts drop goal.
The Exiles then proceeded to batter the Saracens defence, as the enjoyed the lion’s share of territory and possession. Welsh really should have scored when left winger Nick Scott wrapped around on a blindside move and raced away from the flailing Saracens cover. With the line at his mercy, Saracens own left wing George Perkins showed superb pace and determination to haul down Scott inches from the Sarries try line.
Welsh had a few more chances as the half wore on, as their battering ram No8 Opeti Fonua continued to bludgeon his way through the Sarries defensive line.
The experienced Exiles though were left to rue their prolificacy at the Saracens try line, as Ben Spencer crossed for a try right on half time against the run of play. As the Welsh ran the ball into the Saracens midfield, former England international Tom May looked to pass behind the first line of attack. The ball hit the deck, May’s opposite number Wilkins hacked on and Spencer raced away to score as the sides went into the break with the scores London Welsh 3 Saracens 7.
The second half burst into action with two tries in a hectic five minute period. First it was Saracens hooker Jared Saunders who burrowed over to score after Saracens recycled the phases on the back of an impressive Catalin Fercu break. Spencer converted.
The Exiles though hit back immediately when No8 Fonua crossed under the posts for the home side – Roberts converted.
Then the game swung in favour of the Exiles, when Fonua powered his way over in the left hand corner. The Exiles looked to press home their advantage with a prolonged spell camped out on the Saracens try line, but Fonua ws bundled into touch as he looked to bag his hat-trick try.
This missed opportunity seemed to sap all the momentum from the Exiles, and they were punished form the excellent place kicking of Ben Spencer. First after Welsh defenders were adjudged to have left their feet at the breakdown, Spencer sent over the kick in a howling gale.
He then repeated the feat from his own half on the 78th minute mark to drive a dagger into the hearts of Justin Burnell’s side.
Full Time: London Welsh 15 Saracens 20