Sep 29, 2017
Saracens win in Worcester
Saracens beat Worcester Warriors 25-3 in a scrappy encounter at Sixways Stadium in round five of the Aviva Premiership on Friday evening.
Full-back Alex Goode was at his influential best as he scored and created a try for wing Chris Wyles in a contest where either side struggled to find their rhythm.
Goode was the stand-out for Mark McCall’s side in a performance where Saracens clinical edge was found wanting, crossing for three scores and missing out on a try scoring bonus point. The reigning European Champions’ were seldom troubled by the hosts as their suffocating defence was back to its impressive best, limiting Gary Gold’s team to just three points.
Saracens raced off to the perfect start when wing Chris Wyles crossed the game’s first score after just six minutes of play. The experienced Sarries wing-man was on hand to collect a wonderful looping pass from Alex Goode to score in the left-hand corner after scrum-half Ben Spencer had kicked off the sweeping attacking move with a fine ‘show and go’ from 25 metres out. Spencer, who has been in deadly try-scoring form this season with four tries in as many games found Hayden Thompson-Stringer in support. The loosehead prop was upended inches short of the line but Sarries maintained their composure and after five more phases Goode’s cut-out pass found Wyles who finished with ease.
Fly-half Alex Lozowski kept the scoreboard ticking over with two penalty goals after the Warriors strayed offside and were penalised in the scrum after Hayden Thompson-Stringer forced his former Saracens Academy teammate Biyi Alo into conceding a penalty.
Before the break Warriros outside half James Shillcock scored his side’s only points of the game but the second-half was all Saracens’.
After 50 minutes Mark McCall sent on the cavalry. On came Mako Vunipola, Juan Figallo, Nick Isiekwe, Richard Wigglesworth and Owen Farrell all entered the fray and the Sarries bench heavyweights were too much for the Warriors as the visitors ran away with the game.
After some canny work around the fringes from Wigglesworth, Sarries worked a fine blindside overlap, a well-timed offload from Duncan Taylor eliminated two Warriors defenders and Goode shook off a desperate covering tackle from his opposite number Chris Pennell to score.
Sarries were in the driving seat and with Brad Barritt continually bludgeoning the Warriors midfield Saracens were never short of front-foot ball of which to attack.
The north Londoners’ third and frustratingly, final score was a beauty. An expertly judged Owen Farrell crosskick found Wyles on the right wing to score with three minutes of play left on the clock. Farrell converted the try and rushed back a Saracen set-up to hunt their fourth try.
The all-important bonus was agonisingly elusive as skipper Brad Barritt, who was superb throughout the contest, nearly touched down for a try with seconds left, only for the ball to slip out of his grasp as he pirouetted his way around the Worcester cover. It would have been a deserving score for Saracens’ talismanic captain but Sarries left Sixways without the try-bonus.
Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Sean Maitland (Nick Tompkins 7’), 13 Duncan Taylor, 12 Brad Barritt (c), 11 Chris Wyles, 10 Alex Lozowski (Owen Farrell 52’), 9 Ben Spencer (Richard Wigglesworth 50’); 1 Hayden Thompson-Stringer (Mako Vunipola 50’), 2 Jamie George (Scott Spurling 77’), 3 Vincent Koch (Juan Figallo 50’), 4 Dominic Day (Nick Isiekwe 50’), 5 George Kruis, 6 Maro Itoje (Ben Earl 56’), 7 Calum Clark, 8 Jackson Wray
Tries: Chris Wyles x 2, Alex Goode
Conversions: Alex Lozowski (1/2), Owen Farrell (1/1)
Penalties: Alex Lozowski (2/2)