Planet Rugby

Sarries claim spoils against Tigers

14th October 2007 16:46

Share:

census johnston saracens v leicester

Johnston on the charge for Sarries

Saracens secured an impressive 26-19 victory over Guinness Premiership holders Leicester at Vicarage Road on Sunday.

The hosts punished their stuttering visitors' unforced errors to claim the four points that moves them up to second place in the league table.

Decisive second-half scores from Kris Chesney and Adam Powell sealed victory after Richard Haughton touched down in the first half, with Glen Jackson adding a conversion and three penalties.

Leicester got over the line twice, when Jordan Crane and Boris Stankovich scored from lineout drives, with recalled fly-half Paul Burke adding three penalties.

And it seems the end of the World Cup and the arrival of Argentinean coach Marcelo Loffreda cannot come soon enough for the Tigers, who were lucky to escape a heavier mauling from an enterprising Saracens outfit.

Last weekend's second defeat in 40 games at Welford Road, a thumping one at the hands of leaders Gloucester, prompted major surgery to the Leicester team, most notably at fly-half with Andy Goode axed in favour of Paul Burke.

Other changes included recalls for Sam Vesty, Ayoola Erinle, Martin Castrogiovanni and a first Premiership start for scrum-half Ben Youngs, the 18-year-old son of former England number nine Nick Youngs.

Saracens had a much more settled look with Paul Gustard's return in the back-row the only difference to the side that won on the road against Worcester.

They trailed for most of the first period as Leicester somehow clung to a lead chiselled out with a third-minute try from a lineout drive and two penalties from Burke.

Crane was forced over in the left-hand corner from an ominous Leicester rumble to the line before Jackson got Saracens on the board with a ninth-minute penalty.

The fly-half missed two more kickable shots and was held up over the line from one of a number of promising attacks prompted by Neil de Kock as Leicester held on and then increased their lead with a pair of penalties from Burke around the half-hour.

But the Tigers cracked three minutes before the break when skipper Louis Deacon was sin-binned for reaching over a ruck to grab the ball inches from their line.

Jackson added three points from the resulting penalty and Saracens were level moments before the interval when Edd Thrower's cut inside and offload gave Haughton the room to hurdle a tackle and race over in the corner.

Jackson's third penalty nudged Saracens in front for the first time although they had a let-off when unmarked wing Johne Murphy could not hold Burke's cross-kick ten metres out.

But the hosts finally pulled away by punishing Leicester's errors with two tries in three minutes midway through the half.

A promising attack appeared to have broken down in the Leicester 22, only for the visitors to give the ball away and see it moved quickly for hooker Matt Cairns to put Chesney into the corner.

Then another move petered out deep in Saracens' territory, centre Powell kicked ahead and overhauled the diving Burke to win the race to the line with Jackson converting from wide on the left.

Prop Stankovich was then driven over from a line-out late in the game but Burke could not convert and, despite some inventive touches from Geordan Murphy in attack, they were kept at arm's length for the final six minutes.

The Tigers' only reward was a losing bonus-point earned by Burke's third successful penalty 30 seconds from time.

The scorers:

For Saracens:

Tries: Haughton, Chesney, Powell

Con: Jackson

Pen: Jackson 3

For Leicester:

Tries: Crane, Stankovich

Pen: Burke 2

Saracens: 15 Richard Haughton, 14 Edd Thrower, 13 Kevin Sorrell, 12 Adam Powell, 11 Rodd Penney, 10 Glen Jackson, 9 Neil de Kock, 8 Ben Skirving, 7 Richard Hill, 6 Paul Gustard, 5 Hugh Vyvyan, 4 Kris Chesney, 3 Census Johnston, 2 Matt Cairns, 1 Kevin Yates.

Replacements: 16 Andy Kyriacou, 17 Tom Mercey, 18 Iain Fullarton, 19 Dave Seymour, 20 Alan Dickens, 21 Gordon Ross, 22 Noah Cato.

Leicester: 15 Geordan Murphy, 14 Johne Murphy, 13 Ollie Smith, 12 Sam Vesty, 11 Ayoola Erinle, 10 Paul Burke, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Luke Abraham, 6 Brett Deacon, 5 Marco Wentzel, 4 Louis Deacon (c), 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Mefin Davies, 1 Boris Stankovich.

Replacements: 16 Benjamin Kayser, 17 David Young, 18 James Hamilton, 19 Tom Croft, 20 Christophe Laussucq, 21 Matt Cornwell, 22 Tom Varndell.

Referee: David Rose

Touch judges: Robin Goodliffe, David Kurk

Television match official: Bob Ockenden

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , October 24
Munster vs Saracens19:45
Saturday , October 25
Ulster vs Toulon13:00
Scarlets vs Leicester19:45
Bath vs Toulouse15:15
Montpellier vs Glasgow17:15
Northampton vs Ospreys17:15
Sunday , October 26
Clermont Auvergne vs Sale Sharks15:15
Castres vs Leinster13:00
Wasps vs Harlequins17:15
Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 9217:15
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Thursday , October 23
London Welsh vs Bordeaux-BeglesLondon Welsh vs Bordeaux-Begles Preview
Friday , October 24
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Brive vs Zebre18:30
Grenoble vs London Irish18:30
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Newcastle19:30
Edinburgh vs LOU Rugby19:45
Saturday , October 25
Bucuresti vs Stade Francais14:00
Rovigo vs Cardiff Blues14:00
Exeter vs Connacht15:00
Oyonnax vs Gloucester19:45
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Currie Cup
Saturday , October 25
Western Province vs Lions17:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Saturday , October 25
Taranaki vs Tasman19:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sunday , October 19
Ospreys 42 - 7 Benetton TrevisoOspreys vs Benetton Treviso Report
Toulouse 30 - 23 MontpellierToulouse vs Montpellier Report
Toulon 28 - 18 ScarletsToulon vs Scarlets Report
Leinster 25 - 20 WaspsLeinster vs Wasps Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
London Irish 70 - 14 RovigoLondon Irish vs Rovigo Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
International Match
Saturday , October 18
Australia 28 - 29 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
More International Match results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sale Sharks 26 - 27 MunsterSale Sharks vs Munster Report
Saracens 30 - 23 Clermont AuvergneSaracens vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Racing Metro 92 20 - 11 NorthamptonRacing Metro 92 vs Northampton Report
Glasgow 37 - 10 BathGlasgow vs Bath Report
Leicester 25 - 18 UlsterLeicester vs Ulster Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
LOU Rugby 28 - 18 London WelshLOU Rugby vs London Welsh Report
Zebre 24 - 33 Oyonnax
Cardiff Blues 37 - 14 Grenoble
Stade Francais 22 - 38 Newport Gwent D'gons
Bayonne 30 - 24 Exeter
Connacht 48 - 12 La Rochelle
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
Currie Cup
Lions 50 - 20 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
Western Province 31 - 23 Blue BullsWestern Province vs Blue Bulls Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Taranaki 49 - 30 AucklandTaranaki vs Auckland Report
Manawatu 23 - 18 Southland
Tasman 26 - 6 CanterburyTasman vs Canterbury Report
More ITM Cup results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , October 17
Harlequins 25 - 9 CastresHarlequins vs Castres Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Bordeaux-Begles 13 - 15 EdinburghBordeaux-Begles vs Edinburgh Report
Newcastle 43 - 19 Bucuresti
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton625
2Saracens622
3Exeter620
4Bath620
5Wasps615