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Saracens demolish Northampton Saints

18 Nov 2006
Saracens demolish Northampton Saints

Andy Farrell scored his first try since switching codes in Saracens’ five-try demolition of Northampton.

The 31-year-old, making only his second start at inside centre, helped put the Saints on the back-foot with his accurate kicking.

Farrell’s impressive try-scoring display will have undoubtedly caught the eye of under-fire England boss Andy Robinson.

The former rugby league international showed his class in the 29th minute, breaking two Northampton tacklers with ease to cross under the posts.

However, it was Northampton who made the perfect start as Vaughan Going crossed for a score after only two minutes.

The full-back, nephew of All Blacks legend Sid Going, cut inside the Saracens defence 20 metres out and ran in his first try for Saints with Kiwi Carlos Spencer adding the extras.

The boot of Farrell kept the pressure on Northampton, whose defence soon crumbled on 20 minutes.

Several phases of slow ball allowed scrum-half Neil de Kock to pick-up from the ruck and touch down under the post. Number 10 Glen Jackson made no mistake with the boot.

Ten minutes later the visitors had the lead. Jackson found Farrell, who effortlessly broke the Saints defensive line, with the Sarries fly-half again securing the conversion.

And the onslaught was not over as a rolling Saracens maul five metres out allowed blindside flanker, Hugh Vyvyan, to pick up and score Saracens’ third try.

With Saracens 14 points ahead at half-time, Northampton came out all guns blazing in the second half.

Johnny Howard reduced the deficit with a penalty from 18 metres out and Saracens had to defend ferociously to repel several Saints scrums inside their own 22.

Farrell’s positional kicking relieved the pressure on a beleaguered Saracens defence but it proved a short respite.

With Saints camped out on Saracens’ five-metre line another penalty was given for diving over the top of the ruck and once again Howard slotted home the kick.

That brought the home team to within eight points, so Ben Skirving’s fabulous breakaway try with 15 minutes remaining brought some relief.

The number eight split from a ruck 30 metres out and ran in unopposed to grab Saracens’ fourth try and the crucial bonus point.

And the visitors were not finished as Skirving grabbed his second try after driving over with the Saracens pack.

Jackson converted to maintain his 100% kicking record and round off a brilliant day for the London club.

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