Saracens brush Bath aside and top Premiership

An explosive first half from Saracens helped the former Champions to a 31-17 bonus point victory over Bath at Allianz Park on Sunday.

The result means that Saracens are back on top of the Premiership standings
with three bonus point victories from three matches.

A quick start and four first-half tries did the damage as Saracens powered
past the West Country side in perfect conditions for rugby.

Both teams headed into the game having recorded back-to-back wins, and a close
encounter was anticipated, but Sarries produced a fantastic performance during
the opening exchanges to take the game away from Bath.

The two teams exchanged penalties during the opening ten minutes before Saracens
asserted their dominance with four tries in the remaining half hour before the
interval.

David Strettle continued his strong early-season form with the first try, and
he added a second in the first half when he combined with Chris Ashton. Before
then, the second came when Alex Goode marked his return from injury with a well-taken
try, following a period of Bath pressure.

Owen Farrell slotted all three conversions, and he added a fourth when Matt
Stevens dove over in spectacular style to leave Bath with a mountain to climb
in the second half.

There was a noticeable change in Saracens’ game plan after the break as they
sought to consolidate their lead.

The first score of the second half came just shy of the hour when Semesa Rokoduguni
intercepted Goode’s ambitious pass to score Bath’s first try of the afternoon,
but by then it was too late to mount a comeback. George Ford converted and Bath
held their own in the final 20 minutes.

And they were able to add a second score in the last five minutes when Dave
Atwood stayed low and drove over the line from short range for Ford to convert
and add further respectability to the scoreline.

Duncan Taylor was named man of the match.

Final Score Saracens 31 (31) Bath 17 (3)

Scorers

Saracens
Tries – Strettle (2), Goode, Stevens
Pen – Farrell
Con – Farrell 4
Drop –

Bath
Tries – Rokoduguni
Pen – Heathcote
Con – Ford
Drop –

Match Officials
Referee
: J P Doyle (65th Premiership game)
Assistant Referees: Nigel Carrick and Stuart Terheege
TMO: David Sainsbury.

Teams

Saracens

15. Goode; 14. Ashton, 13. Wyles, 12. Taylor, 11. Strettle; 10. Farrell, 9. Wigglesworth; 1. M. Vunipola, 2. Brits., 3. Stevens, 4. Borthwick (c), 5. Kruis, 6. B. Vunipola, 7. Burger, 8. Joubert

Replacements: 16. George, 17. Gill, 18. Johnston, 19. Hargreaves, 20. Brown, 21. De Kock, 22. Mordt, 23. Ransom

Bath

15. Anthony Watson, 14. Semesa Rokoduguni, 13. Matt Banahan, 12. Gavin Henson, 11. Tom Biggs, 10. Tom Heathcote, 9. Martin Roberts, 1. Anthony Perenise, 2. Rob Webber, 3. David Wilson, 4. Stuart Hooper ( c ), 5. Dominic Day, 6. Alafoti Fa’osiliva, 7. Guy Mercer, 8. Leroy Houston

Replacements :16. Tom Dunn, 17. Paul James, 18. Kane Palma-Newport, 19. Dave Attwood, 20. Matt Garvey, 21. Micky Young, 22. George Ford, 23. Jonathan Joseph

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