McCall hails Sarries’ decision-making

Date published: December 7 2015

Saracens boss Mark McCall was delighted by his team's intelligence and decision-making as they collected maximum points in Sunday's 38-3 win away at Newcastle Falcons.

The Premiership champions returned to the top of the league with the five points after seeing Exeter Chiefs overtake them on Saturday.

In a tactical battle at Kingston Park, Saracens were able to control the scoreboard throughout, leading 13-3 at the break.

And they finished strongly with tries from Nick Tompkins followed by two late efforts from Charlie Hodgson and Billy Vunipola to secure all five points and make it six league wins on the spin this season.

"We're pleased with how it went anyway," said McCall.

"With a much-changed team and a really young team the energy had with the kicking game and defensively it was really good.

"They kicked the ball a lot and it probably wasn't the prettiest to watch at times but I thought our decision-making as to when to kick the ball back when it wasn't on and when to counter-attack, and we did that pretty well at times.

"Had our maul five metres from their line worked a little better it might have been more comfortable for us after an hour but overall it's a great result for us.

"They came with a massive kicking plan from nine. We kind of thought they would after watching the Sale game last week and they did that pretty relentlessly.

"There were times when it was on the money and there was nothing really on we had to kick it back and with Ben Spencer he's superb at that.

"But when we put a bit of pressure on them they gave us some space to attack and I thought our counter-attack was good.

"Sometimes in these games you have to be patient and I thought we did that well. Overall it was a really strong squad effort."

Having drawn at Sale Sharks last week, it was a disappointing return for the Falcons, and boss Dean Richards admitted that his team needed to be more accurate as they tried to match Saracens tactically.

"They are pretty accurate in everything they do," he said.

"At 16-3 down with 55 minutes gone you try to chase the game which plays into their hands which is what happened.

"When you look at the way Saracens play, they play a huge territory game. If you play a territory game and match them with a bit of patience, they get frustrated or as frustrated as you get, which is why we were in the game after 55 minutes.

"We should have just had a bit more patience probably."