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Monday, January 16, 2012

Saracens close to qualification following win over Biarritz

Saracens are on the verge of qualification for the next round of the Heineken Cup after they beat Biarritz 20-16 at Vicarage Road on Sunday. Owen Farrell kicked over five from five penalties as they battled past the French outfit.

A little under 7000 fans watched key performances from Farrell and Alex Goode as they contributed towards Saracens being in a position whereby they need just one point from their trip to Treviso this coming weekend.

Young number nine Ben Spencer had crossed for their only try of the match while Dimitri Yachvilli converted his own charge down try for the visitors, and kicked two penalties.

"We are pleased to have won the game - these kind of games are about getting the job done," said Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall.

"There were times in the first half and the start of the second where we were very dominant and at 14-6 we had an opportunity to pull away and break them. We couldn't do that but the last 20 minutes characterised everything we are about as a club with the the work ethic and discipline."

The following highlights feature not only the tries, but some nice pieces of play around the park (including a bit hit). It's in French, which is not the host broadcaster language but all we have available right now. If you'd like to contribute with highlights or short clip, please get in touch.

Posted at 1:58 pm | 4 comments

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stroudos January 16, 2012 4:57 pm

RD said...
"It's in French, which is not the host broadcaster language but all we have available right now. If you'd like to contribute with highlights or short clip, please get in touch.

Don't bother mate. I caught this on Sky and Barnes and Harrison were excruciating. Just awful.

One very small and insignificant example, but one that really grated:
Quite early in the game, when a try attempt was held up - Barnes: "Fantastic refereeing, no need to go to the TMO because the ref's got himself in the right place, close to the action, his own two eyes are the best tools for this job, blah blah, wonderful fitness to keep up with the play, isn't it terrible when refs rely on the TMO, etc etc" - really over the top, bizarrely so.

Then, later when a Biarritz drop goal attempt just missed - Barnes: "That's a big call by the referee, why's he not checking with the TMO, he should get the video checked out if there's even a slight element of doubt" and on and on, completely contradicting his earlier comment, with both those comments being completely pointless and unnecessary.

No, give me the French commentary any day. I'm fortunate to understand most of it, but even if I didn't, it sounds so much better anyway!


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stroudos January 16, 2012 5:01 pm

Anyway, very enjoyable game I thought. Loved the way Biarritz stuck at it, although I think if it hadn't been for Stringer's slow-motion box kick Biarritz wouldn't have looked anywhere near as close to making the comeback.

England-wise, I thought Farrell looked remarkably composed; Hodgson and Barritt slightly less so.

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jumping04 January 16, 2012 6:57 pm

Agree with Stroudos on many things. Hodgson and Barritt I feel aren't really England material going forward, but given Flood's injury and the youth of the likes of George Ford, Hodgson is the only option at fly. They might as well make him comfortable by giving him Barritt inside.
Farrell has balls of steel though. Wouldn't mind having him kick so vital penalties at the end of the game.
As for the commentary; French is perfect. I understand the general idea of what they are saying, but it is so much better than English commentary simply because if I just switch off my brain I don't have to understand any. Probably the only English language commentator I can handle is Hugh Bladen. The rest come across so one eyed that in the world cup despite having English commentary available on TV I would go online and look for Japanese commentary so I could focus on the game without being influenced by the poor commentary.

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