Nov 11, 2018
Match Report: Saracens 34-22 Worcester Warriors
Saracens wrapped up their block of Premiership Rugby Cup fixtures with a 34-22 win over Worcester Warriors on a perfect autumn afternoon at Allianz Park.
A brace from Ali Crossdale plus scores from Will Skelton, Schalk Burger, Ben Earl and Alex Lewington confirmed victory over a Warriors side that came in to the fixture with a strong record in the competition.
A topsy turvy first half saw the opening 20 minutes pass without a single point scored as both sides struggled to make their mark on the game. Saracens finally broke the deadlock just after the midway point in the half when an impressive driving maul saw Burger bundled over the line in the corner to give the Men in Black a 5-0 lead. Sarries’ advantage was not to last; Worcester levelled the scores with a try of their own just a few minutes later when Scott Van Breda raced on to a kick and dotted down. The South African also added the extras from the tee to give the visitors a narrow lead.
The tries seemed to have a liberating effect on the game with both sides adding a further score each before the half was up. Some lovely attacking play from the likes of Tom Whiteley and Matt Gallagher helped the home side put pressure on the away team before Lewington found space to add Sarries’ second score with just over five minutes left in the half. Max Malins was unlucky with the boot, leaving Saracens with a narrow 3 point lead as the half began to wind down.
With just minutes left in the half Worcester created a final opportunity of their own, darting through a gap in the Saracens defence to set up a chance metres from the Sarries line, before moving the ball out wide to flanker Matti Williams out on the wing who broke through to score and give the visitors a narrow 10-12 lead at the break.
Sarries started the second half in style, looking lively in attack as they built pressure on the visitors to score three un-answered tries early in the half. A powerful driving maul gave Earl the opportunity to dot down before Crossdale added the bonus point moments later. Will Skelton added the third, finishing off a move of his own creation before the hour mark to give Saracens a 15 point lead.
Worcester though had enjoyed a good run thus far in the cup competition and the Warriors still had plenty of fight to show. A well worked score for the visitors followed Skelton’s effort – Dean Hammond offloading to Tom Howe for the five points.
Pressure was still building from Saracens however; Adam Powell’s young side showing good patience to create opportunities and wear the Worcester defence down. Crossdale added his second of the afternoon to take Saracens to 34-17 before a final effort from the Warriors with ten minutes left to play.
34-22 the final score as Sarries finished off an unbeaten run in this group of fixtures leaving the Men in Black tied on 11 points with the Warriors at the top of Pool 2.