Planet Rugby

Tigers defeat weakened Saracens

10th May 2014 17:12

Share:

manu tuilagi leicester tigers saracens

Scorer: Manu Tuilagi

A bonus-point win for Leicester Tigers confirmed their third-place finish after defeating a weakened Saracens outfit 31-27.

Sarries took an early 8-3 lead through Ben Spencer's try and Charlie Hodgson's penalty, with Owen Williams responding via the boot for the Tigers.

But when Leicester were awarded a penalty try just before half-time, they never looked back.

Justin Melck was red carded for the London-based side and scores by Manu Tuilagi, Blaine Scully and Graham Kitchener sealed the win.

Saracens were awarded a penalty try themselves and Jack Wilson and Spencer also went over, but their indiscipline ultimately proved costly.

With both sides protecting players for their respective semi-final clashes, it was two much-changed line-ups that went head-to-head at Welford Road. It was the visitors, who have already secured top-spot in the Premiership, that opened the scoring in the first minute through Spencer's touchdown.

Leicester were struggling to get a grip on proceedings and, although Williams reduced the deficit via a penalty, Mark McCall's men were the ones who continued to threaten.

Hodgson made a break through the heart of the hosts' rearguard which led to a Tigers' infringement at the breakdown. The stand-off duly converted the resultant opportunity to give them an 8-3 advantage.

It went from bad to worse for the Midlands' outfit when David Mele, Owen Williams and Geoff Parling went off injured, but they regained their composure and a penalty try moved them ahead at the break.

That was the confidence booster Leicester needed as they came out with renewed vigour in the second period.

The pressure resulted in Michael Tagicakibau being yellow carded and the hosts immediately took advantage when Tuilagi powered over. Melck then saw red before Scully crossed the whitewash to extend their lead to 24-8.

Although Sarries were awarded a penalty try of their own to give them a glimmer of hope, Kitchener effectively ended the game as a contest when he touched down.

Wilson scored for Saracens with a quarter of the game to go and Spencer went over late on, but they were unable to overturn Tigers' lead.

The scorers:

For Leicester:
Tries: Penalty Try, Tuilagi, Scully, KItchener
Cons: Flood 3
Pen: Williams

For Saracens:
Tries: Spencer 2, Penalty Try, Wilson
Cons: Spencer 2
Pen: Hodgson
Yellow Card: Tagicakibau
Red Card: Melck

Leicester Tigers: 15 Mathew Tait, 14 Niall Morris, 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi, 12 Toby Flood, 11 Blaine Scully, 10 Owen Williams, 9 David Mele, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Pablo Matera, 6 Steve Mafi, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Louis Deacon (c), 3 Fraser Balmain, 2 Neil Briggs, 1 Boris Stankovich.
Replacements: 16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Marcos Ayerza, 18 Tiziano Pasquali, 19 Graham Kitchener, 20 Tom Croft, 21 Sam Harrison, 22 Dan Bowden, 23 Adam Thompstone.

Saracens: 15 Ben Ransom, 14 Michael Tagicakibau, 13 Tim Streather, 12 Duncan Taylor, 11 Jack Wilson, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Ben Spencer, 8 Nick Fenton-Wells, 7 Justin Melck, 6 Maro Itoje, 5 Hayden Smith, 4 Eoin Sheriff, 3 Petrus Du Plessis, 2 Jamie George (c), 1 Rhys Gill.
Replacements: 16 Scott Spurling, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 James Johnston, 19 Tom Jubb, 20 Hayden Thompson-Stringer, 21 Neil de Kock, 22 Nils Mordt, 23 Nick Tompkins

>Referee: Greg Garner

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand vs Australia08:35
Argentina vs South Africa20:40
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse vs Castres20:45
Saturday , August 23
Brive vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Toulon vs La Rochelle18:30
Bordeaux-Begles vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Montpellier vs Grenoble18:30
Bayonne vs Oyonnax18:30
Stade Francais vs Lyon20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , August 22
Pumas vs Griquas19:10
Saturday , August 23
Blue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings15:00
Western Province vs Lions17:05
Sharks vs Cheetahs19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour vs Southland19:35
Friday , August 22
Waikato vs Canterbury18:05
Hawkes Bay vs Taranaki20:05
Saturday , August 23
Northland vs Wellington14:35
Counties Manukau vs Otago16:35
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu vs Auckland14:35
Bay Of Plenty vs Tasman16:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Sunday , August 17
Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
Northland 23 - 28 Manawatu
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 16
Australia 12 - 12 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
South Africa 13 - 6 ArgentinaSouth Africa vs Argentina Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Clermont Auvergne 30 - 26 GrenobleClermont Auvergne vs Grenoble Report
Brive 37 - 15 La Rochelle
Montpellier 16 - 19 Racing Metro ParisMontpellier vs Racing Metro Paris Report
Bordeaux-Begles 18 - 9 Lyon
Castres 22 - 25 Stade Francais
Toulouse 20 - 19 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Lions 60 - 19 Eastern Province KingsLions vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Western Province 41 - 17 Blue BullsWestern Province vs Blue Bulls Report
Cheetahs 34 - 27 GriquasCheetahs vs Griquas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Otago 28 - 14 North Harbour
Wellington 25 - 37 WaikatoWellington vs Waikato Report
Canterbury 48 - 9 AucklandCanterbury vs Auckland Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 15
Bayonne 15 - 29 ToulonBayonne vs Toulon Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Sharks 34 - 17 PumasSharks vs Pumas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Southland 34 - 23 Bay Of Plenty
Thursday , August 14
Taranaki 9 - 9 Counties ManukauTaranaki vs Counties Manukau Report
More ITM Cup results
Currie Cup
Saturday , August 9
Griquas 24 - 31 SharksGriquas vs Sharks Report
Pumas 28 - 21 CheetahsPumas vs Cheetahs Report
Lions 41 - 13 Blue BullsLions vs Blue Bulls Report
Friday , August 8
Eastern Province Kings 16 - 35 Western ProvinceEastern Province Kings vs Western Province Report
More Currie Cup results
Super Rugby
Saturday , August 2
Waratahs 33 - 32 CrusadersWaratahs vs Crusaders Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00