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Alex Goode, Billy Vunipola and Jack Nowell top the Opta Statistics at the Final

Alex Goode, Billy Vunipola and Jack Nowell top the Opta Statistics at the Final

Alex Goode showed once again why he could cause England coach Eddie Jones a selection headache in Australia this summer at Saturday’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Final.

The stats never lie and this week’s Opta offering shows Goode completely deserved his bottle of champagne as man of the match at the final whistle, as well as his winners’ medal.

The 28-year-old gained 167 metres in this game, the most by any player in the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final since Opta began recording the data in 2008-09.

He beat the previous high of 145 set by George North in 2014, but that final included extra time making Goode’s heroics all the more impressive.

Goode was also joint-top of the carries charts with Jack Nowell on 19, and notched up the most defenders beaten (six) and offloads (four).

The historic 28-20 victory over Exeter Chiefs at Twickenham made Saracens just the third Aviva Premiership Rugby club after Leicester Tigers (twice) and Wasps to win a domestic and European double in the same year.

This was also the first time Saracens had topped the league before going on to win the playoff final – they had twice finished top before losing either the semi-final or final, while their two previous Premiership wins came after finishing 2nd-4th in the league – and they are the first team since the Tigers in 2010 to lift the famous trophy for a second successive year.

But Goode was not the only man to shine for Sarries, as Chris Wyles continued his impressive run in big matches. He scored twice in the semi-final against Leicester after crossing for a try in last season’s final against Bath Rugby.

Billy Vunipola ruled the roost in tackles made with 16, while the wolf pack’s engine room pairing of Maro Itoje and George Kruis were not far behind on 14 – although Exeter’s Dave Ewers matched their efforts.

Vunipola was also second in carries with 17, while Itoje led the way in terms of turnovers won alongside Luke Cowan-Dickie with two apiece.

And with another 10 points in the final, Exeter fly-half Gareth Steenson finished the season on 258 – 73 points clear of his nearest challenger, Wasps’ Jimmy Gopperth.
Billy Vunipola (Saracens) – 16
George Kruis (Saracens), Dave Ewers (Exeter Chiefs), Maro Itoje (Saracens) – 14
Mako Vunipola (Saracens) – 13 
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs), Alex Goode (Saracens) – 19
Billy Vunipola (Saracens) – 17
Dave Ewers (Exeter Chiefs) – 16
Metres made
Alex Goode (Saracens) – 167
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs) – 63
Phil Dollman (Exeter Chiefs) – 61
Defenders beaten
Alex Goode (Saracens) – 6
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs), Phil Dollman (Exeter Chiefs) – 5
Olly Woodburn (Exeter Chiefs), Chris Wyles (Saracens), Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs) – 3
Clean breaks
Phil Dollman (Exeter Chiefs), Chris Wyles (Saracens) – 3
Alex Goode (Saracens), Duncan Taylor (Saracens) – 2

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