And so that’s the cricket season finished! Wow I’ve had an amazing summer, I’ve seen some amazing individual performances , there’ll be plenty of TV cricket over the winter, but I prefer my sport live, Rugby is my sport of choice over the winter months, Saracens are my team of choice, with the odd alternative team thrown in. Oh and the odd England game, the All Blacks this Autumn, I can’t resist them!
This wasn’t my first Saracens match, I did miss their opening match against Newcastle and the first home game against Bristol Bears, cricket took precedence. However I was at Northampton Saints, the home team put on a much better performance than those of last season, with the final score being Saints 27 Saracens 38.
My first and Saracens second, home game was against Gloucester. It was billed as the battle of the Fly Halves after Eddie Jones failed to include Danny Cipriani in his training squad. I must fess up here, I’m a Cipriani fan and always have been. The issue for him in this match was that his forwards couldn’t provide him with any ball. The result was Saracens 38 Gloucester 15.
The Gloucester match was relentless rugby from Saracens, a fair few errors were made at Franklin’s Gardens, with 2 players binned. However at Allianz Park, most things went right.
And so to the Bath match, the team starting in Blue and White saw 13 changes from the one that saw Bath beat Saints 17 to 15. That wasn’t without comment on social media platforms, Twitter in particular.
However this Bath team could hold their heads high at the end of the game, more about that later.
Saracens played some outstanding rugby, that boring tag must surely be shaken off, those of us who watch this team regularly know it’s been an unworthy tag for a fair few years now. Saracens had made a few changes of their own. but that involved Billy Vunipola and crowd favourite Jackson Wray coming into the fray.
Saracens scored 8 tries, with 2 in each half, the bonus point was sorted in the first half with Liam Williams, Alex Goode, Jamie George and Nick Tompkins crossing the line. Alex Goode was all over the place, he had a hand in virtually all of the 8 tries scored, his running lines at times really are second to none, especially as Full Back.
Tompkins hadn’t been in the starting XV, he came on for Brad Barritt who befell what looked like another bad facial injury. Hopefully it isn’t as bad as it looked. Tompkins shared midfield duties with Alex Lozowski, both are slight men, but wow they tackle above their weight, they both put in a big shift in the absence of their captain.
Liam Williams bagged a further 2 tries in the second half, with prop Tit Lamositele to thank for one, it was quite amazing to see the big man on his toes and storming through and his pass was perfect. The third of Williams tries was courtesy of a pass from that man Goode.
Sean Maitland was the recipient of another great attack from Saracens, the ball flew across the back line and ended up in the wingers hands. Bath were the recipients of 2 intercepts, one a ball thrown from Richard Wigglewswoth to fellow scrum half Chris Cook, who stormed down three quarters of the pitch to score and the other an Owen Farrell, ‘pass’ to Tom Homer who high tailed it even further. Rhys Priestland’s kicking was immaculate all afternoon and he converted Cook’s try and another scored by Homer. Freddie Burns on as a replacement converted the 3rd Bath try.
Christopher Tolofua finished things off for Saracens and Farrell’s conversion took the home team to the magic 50 point mark. The final score was Saracens 50 Bath 27. A good day at the office for the men in black, yet I’m sure the errors will be much discussed during their first training session back! A word for the forwards as I’m editing my photos, the rolling man was a thing of beauty from Saracens today, I’d love to see the stats on how much ground they made!
My new seat is perfect for candid, close up photos, so excuse the random shots littered throughout this season.