Planet Rugby

Sarries rich in confidence - McCall

17th May 2014 19:18

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MARK MCCALL SARACENS DIRECTOR OF RUGBY

Delighted: Mark McCall

Mark McCall says his Saracens side are brimming with confidence in stark contrast to last season's string of near misses.

After seeing off Harlequins in Saturday's Allianz Park semi-final by 31-17, McCall's men now target an historic domestic and European double.

Knocked out of the Heineken Cup in the last four by Toulon, and castled at the same stage in the Premiership by this year's final opponents, Northampton Saints, McCall said Sarries' season was done and dusted by this time twelve months ago.

"The squad is really confident at the moment," said McCall. "The players front-up every single week.

"We've got some demons from the past in these semi-finals - against Toulon last season and Northampton here. I think we have come a long way as a team and a squad in the last 12 months.

"Our season was over this time 12 months ago. It was finished, we had nothing left to do, and we just had regrets.

"We've had five years of building to this point. It hasn't all gone smoothly - there have been some big setbacks along the way - but we have got players who are more mature and are better than they were a couple of years ago. It's good to be part of."

Meanwhile, Harlequins counterpart Conor O'Shea said he was proud of his side's efforts against the runaway league leaders.

"We played outstandingly in the first-half - the intensity was there. I am unbelievably proud of the way our guys fought out there," said O'Shea.

"I look back on this season, and the two best sides are in the final. I think ourselves and Leicester fought tooth and nail, but we just ran out of a bit of steam."

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