Apr 07, 2015
Saracens defeat Racing - Match Review
Saracens produced one of this season’s most memorable victories on Sunday, when Marcelo Bosch’s last gasp penalty clinched a famous victory against Racing Metro.
In a tight and tense contest, Saracens grinded out a 12-11 win against the Parisian outfit to progress to the last four of Europe’s Premier completion for the third successive season.
Here, we take a look at some key performers of a memorable day.
Bosch! Bosch! Bosch!
Where else can you start? With 80.00 reading on the clock, and Saracens’ Euro hopes depending on a 45 metre kick into a stiff Parisian wind, Argentine centre Marcelo Bosch was catapulted into the ultimate ‘pressure situation’.
"I tried to keep as relaxed as possible and fortunately for me it went over," said the ice-cool Bosch.
"Our kicking coach keeps telling me to think I am on the beach when I am lining up a shot at goal and that's where I put myself.
"I try to train to be as relaxed as possible when I kick. I had the wind in my face and I didn't want to force my kick because I wouldn't have kicked it so well,” added the Saracens centre.
Kick it well? He absolutely nailed it! But Bosch’s performance was more than just his last minute heroics from the kicking tee. Once again the Los Pumas centre was at the fulcrum of a superb Saracens defensive performance. He made 11 tackles, the most of any back on the pitch and carried on nine occasions.
His last gasp effort to deny compatriot Juan Imoff in the 53rd minute was simply breath-taking. A good day at the office for the Argentine.
Goode's looking the part
Alex Goode’s standing as one of Europe’s classiest operators in a No15 jersey was reinforced with a superb solo performance at the Stade Yves-du-Manoir.
In the cacophony of noise at Racing Metro’s home ground, Goode was a calming influence at full-back. His assurance in the back field and finely tuned tactical kicking game was needed in a tight contest.
He made 11 caries making 82.5 metres with his 64th minute break a particular highlight. The England man looks in fine fettle as Saracens head into the business end of the season.
Seven Saracens Academy graduates were involved in Saracens' matchday 23-man squad on Sunday. On the bench, Matt Hankin, Maro Itoje and Nick Tompkins were named with Itoje taking to the field to replace Jim Hamilton after 57 minutes.
In what has been a breakthrough year for some members of the academy side, the inclusion of Messrs Hankin, Itoje and Tompkins is a good yardstick for how well the Sarries youth system is performing.
The Stade Yves-du-Manoir was a tinder-box of noise and colour on Sunday. The home faithful played their part, but it was the Saracens fans who stole the show.
Outnumbered, and outflanked around the Racing stadium situated in the Parisian suburb of Colombes, the travelling Saracens fans made themselves heard to roar their side onto a famous victory.
The scenes after the game around the player’s tunnel will be one of the seasons most memorable moments. A big thank you to all those who travelled to the game and to those who turned up to Allianz Park on Easter Sunday.