Unbeaten Sarries see off Northampton

Date published: November 7 2015

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Premiership leaders Saracens retained their unbeaten status after claiming a hard-fought 12-6 victory over Northampton at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

Four kicks from Owen Farrell earned Sarries victory over a spirited Saints side to continue an impressive defence of their Premiership crown. 

The hosts dominated the opening exchanges, taking an early lead but were pegged back before the half-time to see their dominance come to nothing. 

Saracens' preference to kick for territory rather than run with the ball was an effective strategy as they pinned the hosts into their own half with an immense defensive performance. 

This helped them earn victory by stifling the threat posed by the dangerous Northampton back-line in a bruising encounter. 

Not a lot of running rugby was on show during the match and it will have been of huge disappointment for Northampton as they recorded their third defeat in four matches. 

In contrast Saracens' resilience was impressive as they continued their 100% record to leave them topping the Premiership table. 

Stephen Myler gave Northampton an early lead with a penalty in the second minute. Farrell levelled the scores for Saracens in the 35th minute with a penalty following a late tackle from Tom Wood. 

Myler missed an easy penalty attempt soon after. This proved to be costly, with Farrell scoring a penalty from long range on the stroke of half-time to give the visitors the lead against the run of play. 

Farrell extended his side's lead to six points after the break with a penalty in the 47th minute. 

The England fly-half then scored a penalty in the 68th minute keeping his 100% kicking record and extending his side's lead beyond seven points. 

Northampton tried to fight back but couldn't find a way through, although JJ Hanrahan scored a penalty with the final kick of the match, earning Saints a bonus point. 

The scorers:

For Northampton:
Pens: Myler, Hanrahan

For Saracens:
Pens: Farrell 4

Northampton Saints: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Jamie Elliot, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Sam Dickson, 7 Tom Wood (c), 6, Jamie Gibson, 5, Christian Day, 4 James Craig, 3 Kieran Brookes, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Alex Waller.
Replacements: 16 Mikey Haywood, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Paul Hill, 19 Michael Paterson, 20 Teimana Harrison, 21 Lee Dickson, 22 JJ Hanrahan, 23 Ahsee Tuala.

Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Duncan Taylor, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 Chris Wyles, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Jacques Burger, 6 Maro Itoje, 5 Alistair Hargreaves (c), 4 George Kruis, 3 Petrus Du Plessis, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 Mako Vunipola
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 Juan Figallo, 19 Michael Rhodes, 20 Kelly Brown, 21 Ben Spencer, 22 Charlie Hodgson, 3 Marcelo Bosch

Referee: Luke Pearce

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