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Saracens cruise to victory over luckless Leicester at Allianz Park

Published 29/10/2016

Saracens' Mako Vunipola was outstanding against Leicester
Saracens' Mako Vunipola was outstanding against Leicester

Saracens piled fresh misery on to title rivals Leicester by cruising to a 24-10 Aviva Premiership victory at Allianz Park.

The Tigers responded to a heavy defeat in Europe to Glasgow by dispatching Racing 92 last Sunday, but they have now ended a week in which they lost Australia star Matt Toomua for six months because of a knew injury by succumbing in north London.

Chris Wyles, Sean Maitland and Billy Vunipola crossed to cement Saracens' position at the summit of the Premiership table with Owen Farrell landing a penalty and three conversions.

Mako Vunipola produced another dynamic, all-action display that bodes well for England's forthcoming autumn series, although his copybook was blotted by a yellow card for felling Freddie Burns with his shoulder.

Leicester reacted to Mako Vunipola's absence by finally sounding a note of defiance and were rewarded with a try from George Catchpole, but it arrived far too late to threaten the reigning Premiership and European champions.

Saracens pounced as early as the eighth minute after a Leicester error turned attack into defence and several phases later an overlap on the left was turned into a try for Wyles.

Poor line-out defence enabled Wyles to race through a large hole until he was stopped on the five-metre line and when the scrambling Tigers infringed, Farrell was able to kick the champions 10-3 ahead.

A promising Leicester attack came to a close with a wild pass and knock-on, enabling man of the match Michael Rhodes - who had been moved from flanker into the second row to counter the club's second row injury crisis - to launch a counter-attack.

Alex Goode glided into space, side-stepping as he went, and when his path was finally blocked he scooped a pass over to Maitland who carried two tackles over the line in a fine finish.

Saracens took just three minutes of the second half to extend their 17-3 interval lead when a committed kick-chase set-up an attacking line-out that finished with Billy Vunipola driving over.

Leicester seemed incapable of making an impression and were losing the physical battle at every turn, even when committing more players to the breakdown.

A team that last won the Premiership title in 2013 looked rudderless, struggling to impose themselves up-front and flinging the ball around aimless in the hope of unlocking the home side.

Mako Vunipola disappeared into the sin-bin and it was upon his departure that Leicester scored their try, Burns breaking from his own 22 before smart handling sent replacement Catchpole over.

The score brought the best out of the Tigers, but Saracens were proving typically resilient at absorbing the pressure.

Alex Lozowski, who had replaced Farrell, produced a try-saving tackle on George McGuigan close to his line before Schalk Brits dislodged the ball from Ellis Genge to secure an important late turnover.

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