Planet Rugby

Saints inflict rare defeat on Sarries

14th November 2009 15:27

Share:

Saints v Sarrie LV

No way through: Sarries' James Short is stopped...short

Northampton Saints handed Saracens only their second defeat of the season in the LV= Cup on Saturday, with a 19-3 victory.

Wingers Chris Ashton and Bruce Reihana went over for tries either side of the break and Stephen Myler kicked the rest of the points for Saints, who have now won two from two in Pool Four.

Guinness Premiership leaders Sarries, whose only other defeat this term came in Europe at the hands of Jonny Wilkinson's Toulon, had a largely second-string team out and it showed as they were bullied in most departments.

Fly-half Alex Goode landed their only points with a first-half penalty, but their cup hopes are still alive owing to their win against Bath last weekend.

The match began under grey skies before driving rain and fierce winds arrived 15 minutes in.

Such conditions played havoc with both teams' kicking games, with Myler off target with a relatively straightforward penalty attempt after seven minutes.

Goode, who has been playing at full-back this season even though he prefers the number 10 spot, judged the wind perfectly to land his first penalty and put Sarries 3-0 up in the 20th minute.

But Saints hit back immediately with a try created by a moment of brilliance by Ben Foden, who cut a sensational line when returning a deep punt forward by the visitors.

Having breezed through three sprawling tackles, the full-back, not needed by England this weekend, then kicked on for Ashton to ground in the right corner.

Myler could not convert that try and also skewed wide another easy penalty three minutes before half-time.

The England Saxon did, however, knock over a tough goal from the right touchline in stoppage time, after Saracens substitute prop Tom Mercey was sin-binned for hands in the ruck, to put Saints 8-3 ahead at the break.

Down to 14 men, the home side applied the pressure at the start of the second half and their powerful scrum forced a penalty three minutes in that Myler converted.

Goode was short and wide with a long-range penalty but playing with the wind now and back to their full complement, Saracens began to gain more of a foothold in the match.

That did not stop them falling further behind in the 55th minute when Reihana bulldozed his way over from range, moments after making an original break that caused panic in Sarries' ranks. Myler failed to add the extras but Saints were 16-3 ahead and cruising.

With their scrum being bullied and their line-out malfunctioning, Saracens had no platform to fight back and Northampton came close to adding a third try on a couple of occasions, only to be denied by last-gasp defending by the visitors.

Myler took his haul for the afternoon to nine points with a penalty, his third of the game, in the 76th minute, and try as they might, Saracens' inexperienced side could not score a consolation try despite sustained late pressure.

The Scorers:

For Northampton:
Tries:Ashton, Reihana
Cons:
Pens:Myler 3
Drops:

For Saracens:
Tries:

Cons:
Pens:Goode
Drops:

Yellow cards:

Northampton Saints: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Jon Clarke, 12 James Downey, 11 Bruce Reihana, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Roger Wilson, 7 Scott Gray, 6 Phil Dowson (capt), 5 Juandre Kruger, 4 Christian Day, 3 Santiago Bonorino, 2 Brett Sharman, 1 Soane Tonga'uiha.
Replacements: 16 Joe Gray, 17 Jon Vickers, 18 Alex Waller, 19 James Cannon, 20 Mark Hopley, 21 Alan Dickens, 22 Barry Everitt, 23 Joe Ansbro.

Saracens: 15 Richard Haughton, 14 Noah Cato, 13 Rodd Penney, 12 Kevin Sorrell, 11 James Short, 10 Alex Goode, 9 Kevin Barrett, 8 Jackson Wray, 7 Andy Saull, 6 Don Barrell, 5 Mouritz Botha, 4 George Kruis, 3 Carlos Nieto, 2 Ethienne Reynecke (c), 1 Kasiano Lealamanua.
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Rhys Gill, 18 Tom Mercey, 19 Hugh Vyvyan, 20 Justin Melck, 21 Neil de Kock, 22 Owen Farrell, 23 Kameli Ratuvou.

Referee: Gwyn Morris

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Saturday , October 25
Ulster vs ToulonUlster vs Toulon Preview
Scarlets vs LeicesterScarlets vs Leicester Preview
Bath vs ToulouseBath vs Toulouse Preview
Montpellier vs GlasgowMontpellier vs Glasgow Preview
Northampton vs OspreysNorthampton vs Ospreys Preview
Sunday , October 26
Clermont Auvergne vs Sale SharksClermont Auvergne vs Sale Sharks Preview
Castres vs LeinsterCastres vs Leinster Preview
Wasps vs HarlequinsWasps vs Harlequins Preview
Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92 Preview
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 31
Leinster vs Edinburgh19:35
Ospreys vs Connacht19:35
Glasgow vs Benetton Treviso19:35
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Saturday , October 25
Bucuresti vs Stade Francais14:00
Rovigo vs Cardiff Blues14:00
Exeter vs ConnachtExeter vs Connacht Preview
Oyonnax vs Gloucester19:45
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Currie Cup
Saturday , October 25
Western Province vs LionsWestern Province vs Lions Preview
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Saturday , October 25
Taranaki 36 - 32 TasmanTaranaki vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , October 24
Munster 14 - 3 SaracensMunster vs Saracens Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Grenoble 15 - 25 London Irish
Brive 21 - 26 Zebre
Edinburgh 25 - 17 LOU Rugby
Newport Gwent D'gons 26 - 30 Newcastle
La Rochelle 25 - 13 Bayonne
Thursday , October 23
London Welsh 20 - 52 Bordeaux-BeglesLondon Welsh vs Bordeaux-Begles Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
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
Cardiff Blues 37 - 14 Grenoble
Stade Francais 22 - 38 Newport Gwent D'gons
Bayonne 30 - 24 Exeter
Connacht 48 - 12 La Rochelle
Zebre 24 - 33 Oyonnax
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton625
2Saracens622
3Exeter620
4Bath620
5Wasps615