Sep 08, 2014
Magnificent Seven for Storm in A League win
Saracens Storm kicked off their A League campaign in style scoring seven tries in a 50-24 win against the Exeter Braves at Allianz Park.
Saracens debutant Mike Ellery crossed for two tries, with centre Nick Tompkins and Jacques Burger also crossing twice in an entertaining game. Flanker Matt Hankin was Saracens’ other try scorer with Ben Spencer adding 13 points from the kicking tee.
Impressively led by Captain Maro Itoje throughout the game, the Storm made a perfect start when the lively Nick Tompkins crossed for the games first try after a bone rattling hit from lock forward Hayden Smith turned over possession in the build-up. Spencer converted and minutes later sent over a penalty to give the Storm a 10-0 lead after 10 minutes.
The Braves kicked over a penalty of their own soon after before flanker Hankin crossed for the games second try from a rolling maul. Back row colleague Jacques Burger added Saracens third minutes later before Braves hooker Greg Bateman hit back for the Devonshire side.
The streamlined Burger, now minus his famous locks after a summer shearing, doubled his try tally on the night collecting Itoje’s pass to swan dive over the try line much to the delight of Monday night crowd as Saracens went into the break 31-10 up.
Saracens Storm continued to dominate after the interval, and when Mike Ellery burst down the right wing to feed Nick Tompkins for his second of the game, the contest looked to be over.
Ellery would score himself moments later, in a strong finish after good work from Ben Ransom in the build-up. Braves prop Brett Sturgess crossed soon after before Saracens summer recruit Ellery powered over from the restart pouncing on a Braves error to seal a try scoring brace on debut – Nils Mordt converted to bring up the Storm’s half-century.
Simmonds hit back for Exeter before full-time as the game finished Saracens Storm 50 - Exeter Braves 24.
Saracens Storm starting XV; 15. Ben Ransom; 14. Mike Ellery, 13. Tim Streather, 12. Nick Tompkins, 11. Jack Wilson; Nils Mordt, 9. Ben Spencer; 1. Billy Moss, 2. Phil Thiel, 3, Biyi Alo, 4. Maro Itoje ©, 5. Hayden Smith, 6. Matt Hankin, 7. Jacques Burger, 8. Ernst Joubert.
Replacements; (All used) 16. Antonio Harris, 17. Ollie Walker, 18. Jack Culverhouse, 19. Kennett O’Neill, 20. Hayden Thompson-Stringer, 21. Tom Whiteley, 22. Max Wilkins, 23. George Perkins.
Nick Tompkins (x2), Matt Hankin, Jacques Burger (x2), Mike Ellery (x2)
Ben Spencer (5/5), Nils Mordt (1/2)
Ben Spencer (1/1)