Apr 05, 2018
Captain Clapp relishing knock out challenge
Captain Lotte Clapp knows what is takes to win silverware having been part of the successful Premiership and Cup double squad of 2015, however this time round Sarries will need to navigate their way through the knock out stages to secure the title starting with a trip to Gloucester-Hartpury this Saturday.
Saracens Women have notched up fifteen wins this season, a draw and narrowly lost out to Quins and Wasps, the other two semi finalists who also play this weekend, a record good to enough to put them at the top of the inaugural Tyrrells Premier 15s table heading into the knock out stages.
"It’s a great achievement finishing top of the table. A lot of hard work has been put in to stay there and not let it slip away from us but it’s what we do now in the knock out stages that really counts” Clapp told Saracens.com.
“Losing out on the two games by such fine margins was hard but considering the high competition within the league and the tough games we had makes me very proud of the team. We have taken the games one by one, prepared well and respected each team. I don’t think we have ever taken a game as a given so we have had no added pressure than we put on ourselves at the beginning of the year. Saturday will be no different.”
Sarries came away comfortable 33-7 victors in their away fixture to Gloucester-Hartpury in round six but the Westcountry outfit have steadily improved throughout the course of the season, staging a second half comeback to earn a draw at Allianz Park in February.
“The next two weekends are going to be tough, I’d imagine both games are going to be very similar to the game we played against them at home and go right down to the wire. Hartpury have some dangerous players like Bianca Blackburn, Ellie Kildunne and Ceri Large who are always a large threat to play against. Over the play offs we aren’t planning on changing the way that we play so we will look to build on what we have done throughout the season.
“From our side Helena Rowland and Marlie Packer will be ones to watch. Helena has the ability to create really exciting attack and her pace and footwork has threatened defences all year. Marlie is tenacious in both attack and defence, giving the team great momentum to play off.”
Clapp also has one eye on the second leg as Sarries return to Allianz Park on Saturday 14th April and hopes that the Sarries family get behind the Women in Black.
“I know the girls will thrive in the home semi. Playing for Sarries fans gives us that extra boost during the game so it will be great to get as many people down to Allianz Park for what will be a thrilling encounter.
Tickets for the home semi final at Allianz Park on Saturday 14th April can be purchased via www.saracens.com
Entry to the game is free for season ticket holders, please bring your season ticket card with you to gain entry.