TOP BAR - Fixtures

Mark McCall hails entire Saracens set-up after his Director of Rugby award

Mark McCall scooped the third Guinness Director of Rugby of the Season award of his career but was quick to pay credit to the entire club for their trophy-laden night at the Aviva Premiership Rugby awards.

McCall – who previously won the top prize in 2012 and 2013 – guided Saracens to their first-ever European title last weekend and the North London club also topped the Aviva Premiership Rugby table in the regular season.

Next up are the domestic semi-finals, this is the seventh year in a row that Sarries have made the final four.

And McCall – who joined from Ulster in 2009 – is delighted with the consistency shown by his side but quick to deflect praise away from himself. 

“This award is recognition for the club overall,” he said. “I feel very lucky to have arrived at the right club at the right time.

“We have a consistency about what we do, a consistency with the length of time the players have been together, a consistency in our approach each week, turning up and being well prepared.

“And that consistency has led to us getting to some play-offs and some big games – we have done that now for the last six or seven years and long may it continue.” 

The future of the club looks rosy as well, Maro Itoje scooped the Land Rover Discovery of the Season award while England internationals like George Kruis, Mako Vunipola and Billy Vunipola are all 26 and under.

And McCall cannot wait to see what the future holds for his North London club.

“This is really exciting at the moment, because we are relatively young – particularly in the pack – over the next two or three season these players are very hungry and motivated to get even better as a group,” he added.

“And we will need to because everyone else is.

“We never want to talk about sustained dominance because there are too many good teams in this league.

“But what we want to try and do is get better, we have improved over the last couple of seasons and we need to keep doing that, keep working hard and keep preparing well.”

The night’s big award – the Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Season – went to full-back Alex Goode who drew special praise from his director of rugby.

“I am really thrilled for Alex Goode because he has played well in the Premiership for a long time now, and particularly this year he has been phenomenal,” he added.

“It’s wonderful to see his consistency being recognised.”

 

Latest News

Toby Flood starts for Newcastle Falcons against Rotherham Titans

Toby Flood makes the first start of his second spell at Newcastle Falcons on Saturday when they host Rotherham Titans…

Joe Marler commits to Harlequins until 2021

Harlequins is thrilled to announce today, Friday 18th August, that England and British and Irish Lions prop, Joe Marler, has…

Joe Marler

European fixtures to be released on Tuesday

The fixtures for the 2017/18 Champions Cup and Challenge Cup season will be announced on Tuesday, 22 August at 3.00pm…

Rokoduguni starts for Bath Rugby against Ospreys

Semesa Rokoduguni will make his first appearance of pre-season when Bath Rugby take on Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium on…

Harlequins team to play Jersey Reds

Harlequins has announced the squad to play Jersey Reds in the final match of the 2017/18 pre-season campaign, at The…

Francis Saili

Stringer starts for Worcester Warriors at Birmingham Moseley

Summer signing Peter Stringer will get his first start for Warriors on Friday night as his side take on Birmingham…

London Irish name side for Ealing Trailfinders clash

London Irish have named a 30-man squad for this Friday’s pre-season clash with Ealing Trailfinders at Hazelwood (kick-off 7.30pm). The…

Gloucester Rugby announce line-ups for preseason friendly at Leinster

Gloucester Rugby will give game time to a number of their first team squad in Leinster on Friday evening as…

American rugby players and coaches to get once in a lifetime opportunity

Thirty American rugby players and coaches are being handed the chance of a lifetime to train in England with Premiership…

Stephen Myler: Northampton Saints ready to fight for the title

Stephen Myler is predicting the closest ever Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign and believes his Northampton Saints side will be right…

Sonatane Takulua expecting big things from Newcastle Falcons this season

Sonatane Takulua believes unity and a collective purpose, combined with an improved playing pool, can help propel Newcastle Falcons up…

Sonatane Takulua

Wasps name team for first pre-season fixture against Ulster

Dai Young has named a 26-man squad to take on Ulster Rugby at Kingspan Stadium in the first pre-season fixture…

Anglo-Welsh Cup 2017-18 launched

WORCESTER WARRIORS have the honour of hosting the opening match in this year’s Anglo-Welsh Cup on Friday 3 November, when…

Leicester Tigers win the Anglo Welsh Cup

Ally Hogg pleased by Newcastle Falcons’ early progress

Ally Hogg believes Newcastle Falcons are well set to attack the new Aviva Premiership season after a double dose of…

Ally Hogg

Topsy Ojo relishing Exiles return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action at HQ

Topsy Ojo believes there could be no more fitting way for London Irish to announce their return as an Aviva…

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua sees Philadelphia trip as a ‘great opportunity’

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua insists his side’s September clash with Saracens in Philadelphia will be no holiday for the players,…

Sonatane Takulua

Harlequins statement: Luke Wallace and Jonas Mikalcius

Harlequins can confirm today (Tuesday 15th August) that flanker Luke Wallace dislocated his hip during the pre-season friendly against London…

Luke Wallace

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

London Irish will host Bath Rugby at the Madejski Stadium in the opening round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Saturday…

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

HITZ graduate secures first full time job after being inspired by Premiership Rugby final

A teenager from Leigh who overcame a troubled home life and tackled confidence and communication issues thanks to Premiership Rugby…

Lucy Neal