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Saracens hoping Maro Itoje will be fit for Northampton showdown

Published 05/04/2016

Saracens lock Maro Itoje was one of the stars of England Grand Slam-winning side
Saracens lock Maro Itoje was one of the stars of England Grand Slam-winning side

Saracens will give Maro Itoje every opportunity to prove his fitness for Saturday's Champions Cup quarter-final against Northampton.

Itoje was replaced at half-time of Friday's 30-10 Aviva Premiership victory over Bath because of a knee injury, but has a good chance of being ready for the all-English European showdown at Allianz Park.

"We're giving Maro as long as we can," Saracens forwards coach Alex Sanderson said.

"The injury is probably an eight to nine-day lay-off, but he's young and a quick healer so we're hoping he'll come through for Thursday's session.

"On Thursday we'll see how he's going. If he's fit, we'll play him because he's in outstanding form."

Saracens face the prospect of being without their Grand Slam-winning England second row partnership if Itoje fails to recover and George Kruis is banned for biting.

Kruis faces a Rugby Football Union disciplinary hearing in Bristol on Tuesday night following an incident involving Bath prop David Wilson.

"Who would want to lose him and George? They're on fire aren't they....the self-proclaimed Saracens Slammers!" Sanderson said.

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