Nov 21, 2016
Saracens International Round-Up
Crucial tries, personal milestones and shock defeats – it was another busy weekend of international rugby for seven members of the Saracens’ squad.
On his return to the England number 15 jersey, reigning Premiership Player of the Season Alex Goode scored his first try for his country as Eddie Jones’ England side comprehensively beat Fiji 58-15 at Twickenham Stadium. Goode, who won his 21st cap on the day showed glimpses of his class from full-back and he scored England’s sixth try of the afternoon nine minutes into the second half and was dangerous throughout.
In his 45th game for England Owen Farrell passed the 500 international points mark against Fiji. Farrell, 25, is second in the England all-time list behind World Cup winner Jonny Wilkinson (1,179 points).
The 2016 World Rugby Player of the Year nominee landed 11-points before exiting the field after 52 minutes with the game already sewn up for the Red Roses in which his Saracens teammates Mako Vunipola and Billy Vunipola also started winning their 37th and 31st caps respectively. Hooker Jamie George came off the bench to win his tenth England cap.
England were rampant as they ran in nine tries as former Saracens Head Coach Eddie Jones maintains his 100% record at the helm. Up next for England will be Argentina on Saturday and one player who could make an appearance is George Kruis, who has recovered from ankle surgery to be called up England’s 32-man squad.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Sean Maitland scored his fourth try for Scotland in their tight 19-16 win over Argentina at Murrayfield. The Sarries wing won his 29th cap in the game that was decided by a last gasp Greig Laidlaw penalty goal after Maitland’s second half effort had cancelled out Matais Orlando’s score earlier in the game. Up next for Vern Cotter’s side is a clash against Georgia.
In Florence, Vincent Koch was part of a Springboks side that were up against former Harlequins’ director of rugby Conor O’Shea’s Italy side whose coaching set-up included former Saracens technical director Brendan Venter as a defence consultant. Koch played for 52 minutes at tighthead prop before being replaced by Trevor Nyakane but it would be a day to forget for Sarries new signing at the rest of the Boks at they were beaten by a resurgent Azzuri side 20-18. Up next for Koch and the Boks is a date with Wales in the Principality Stadium.