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Match Report: Saracens 29 Leicester Tigers 20

05 Feb 2017
Match Report: Saracens 29 Leicester Tigers 20

Saracens will meet Leicester Tigers again in the Anglo-Welsh Cup semi-finals after a bonus-point victory for the 2015 winners at Allianz Park.

Tigers were already through to the semi-finals and will have to return to North London next month with Saracens scoring four tries from Richard Barrington, Nathan Earle, Nick Tompkins and Tom Whiteley.

Saracens led 19-3 after 30 minutes before Luke Hamilton reduced the deficit and George McGuigan’s second-half score gave the Tigers hope but the hosts held on.

The hosts had the first try-scoring opportunity of the match after ten minutes when Matt Gallagher fed the ball to Earle on the left, only for the winger to be held up over the line.

But Saracens strong start was rewarded when prop Barrington was awarded a try by the TMO who adjudged him to have grounded the ball on the line under the posts.

Whiteley added the conversion and the advantage was stretched to 12-0 with 16 minutes played when Earle collected Gallagher’s well-weighted kick to touch down for Saracens’ second try.

Freddie Burns then got the Tigers on the scoreboard with a penalty but when he took a quick tap in his own 22 soon after the ball was ripped from him.

Man of the match Nick Tompkins collected the ball and had a comfortable run down the wing for Saracens third try with Whiteley once again on target with the boot.

The Tigers brought themselves back into the game with six minutes of the first half remaining as Hamilton managed to force his way over from close range with Burns converting.

Whiteley then missed his second penalty just before the half-time whistle and Burns was unsuccessful with a kick of his own after the restart as it remained 19-10.

But when scrum-half Sam Harrison sent hooker McGuigan through a gap to touch down and Tigers were right back in the match.

Another Whiteley penalty eased Saracens’ nerves but Tigers’ Charlie Thacker was nearly over the line only to be stopped by a strong tackle from Samu Vunisa.

Advantage was being played however and Burns was given a straightforward penalty to reduce the deficit back to two points.

But with Saracens pushing for a bonus point score, Tom Croft was shown a yellow card to reduce the visitors to 14.

Whiteley finished off an impressive all-round display from the Saracens with an individual score in the final minute to seal the bonus point and secure a home semi-final.

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