Oct 15, 2017
Match Report: Northampton Saints 13-57 Saracens
Eight try Saracens kept their cool in a bruising battle, and earned a 13-57 bonus point victory at Franklin’s Gardens in the opening round of the Champions Cup.
Liam Williams scored twice, with Brad Barritt, Calum Clark, Vincent Koch, Mako Vunipola, Alex Lozowski, and Ben Spencer all adding to the scoresheet.
Saracens did well not to not get bogged down in some ugly play that saw elbows fly after Owen Farrell lifted Ben Foden off the ground in defence.
The win puts Saracens in control of Pool 2 as Clermont failed to earn a bonus point in their 21-26 away win over Ospreys.
Uncharacteristic mistakes opened the game, though Saracens responded perfectly after going three points down. Slick hands got them in scoring position and a quick Chris Wyles pass put Williams in for the opening try.
Sarries stayed in control as the game became more physical. A 5-metre lineout was mauled over the line with captain Barritt finishing the move.
Northampton’s George North suffered a nasty-looking knee injury after an awkward fall, and the game descended into ugly scraps after 25-minutes.
A Marcelo Bosch tap on put Williams in for the next score. Though after that the ugly game became an out-and-out scrap.
Farrell raced back to defend a Northampton break, but lifted Ben Foden too high for Teimana Harrison’s liking. Some choice words and a few elbows followed and the crowd started to turn.
More pressure from Saracens followed and more scrappy play saw David Ribbans given a yellow for collapsing a maul. Calum Clark scored from the ensuing lineout, securing the four-try bonus point, and Sarries went into the half fully in control.
Straight out of the blocks from halftime Farrell had Saracens rolling again. His break set up Vincent Koch for Sarries fifth try.
Mako Vunipola and Alex Lozowski added scores as Saracens continued to roll.
Northampton’s Mikey Haywood earned a consolation try but Ben Spencer responded to close out the game.
Saracens: Alex Goode, Liam Williams, Marcelo Bosch (Taylor 34'), Brad Barritt (c)( Lozowski 60'), Chris Wyles, Owen Farrell, Richard Wigglesworth (Spencer 67'), Mako Vunipola (Barrington 65'), Jamie George (Britz 52'), Vincent Koch (Figallo 52'), Nick Isiekwe (Day 69'), George Kruis, Maro Itoje, Calum Clark (Burger 58'), Jackson Wray.
Replacements: Schalk Brits, Richard Barrington, Juan Figallo, Dom Day, Schalk Burger, Ben Spencer, Alex Lozowski, Duncan Taylor
Tries: Williams (11'&29'), Barrett (21'), Clark (40'); Koch(42'), M.Vunipola(65'), Lozowski(68'), Spencer(78').
Cons: Farrell 7/8
Penalties: Farrell 1/2
Northampton Saints: Ahsee Tuala, George North (Collins 28'), Luther Burrell, Piers Francis, Ben Foden, Steve Myler (Mallinder 60'), Cobus Reinach (Groom 50'), Alex Waller, Dylan Hartley (c)(Haywood 58'), Kieran Brookes (Ford-Robinson 52'), Michael Paterson (Ratuniyarawa 55'), David Ribbans (Wood 50'), Courtney Lawes, Jamie Gibson, Teimana Harrison.
Replacements: Mikey Haywood, Francois van Wyk, Jamal Ford-Robinson, Api Ratuniyarawa, Tom Wood, Nic Groom, Harry Mallinder, Tom Collins.
Tries: Haywood (76')
Cons: Malinder 1/1
Penalties: Myler 2/2
Yellow cards: Ribbans 40'
Scoring sequence: 3-0 Myler pen; 3-5 Williams try; 3-7 Farrell con; 3-10 Farrell pen; 3-15 Barrett try; 3-17 Farrell con; 3-22 William try; 6-22 Myler pen; 6-27 Clark try; 6-29 Farrell con; 6-34 Koch try; 6-36 Farrell con; 6-41 M.Vunipola try 6-41; 6-43 Farrell con; 6-48 Lozowski try; 6-50 Farrell con; 11-50 Haywood try; 13-50 Malinder con; 13-55 Spencer try; 13-57 Farrell con.