Premiership final: Exeter Chiefs v Saracens Review

Saracens reclaimed their title on Saturday, beating Exeter 27-10 at Twickenham to seal their fourth Aviva Premiership trophy.

While the Chiefs dominated the first 10 minutes of the game, with the Men in Black having only 1% possession, they failed to turn that control into anything tangible on the scoreboard as Joe Simmonds kicked over a solitary penalty.

After a disappointing start, Mark McCall’s side returned to fine form with two tries coming in the space of four minutes. Billy Vunipola, whose return was welcomed after an unfortunate string of injuries this season, crashed over the line to claim the first score for Saracens, with Chris Wyles to follow shortly after thanks to quick hands from Sean Maitland and Alex Goode.

Exeter managed to hold back the Saracens storm for the remainder of the first half, going into the break 12-3 down.

But they failed to keep up with the pace of Saracens’ attack after the interval, with Brad Barritt slicing through the Exeter defence to present Wyles with the chance to grab his second try seven minutes into the second half.

American born Wyles, who has seen Saracens lift the title three times in four years, hung up his boots for the last time for the Men in Black as he heads into a well-earnt retirement. He has been with Saracens for ten years, making 250 appearances and he drew level with fellow winger Chris Ashton with 47 Aviva Premiership Rugby tries.

Saracens found themselves temporarily down to fourteen men on the hour, after hooker Schalk Brits was sin-binned for collapsing a driving maul on his final appearance for the club.

The Chiefs capitalised on their numerical advantage as Gareth Steenson crashed over the line from close range following an Exeter scrum. Steenson then kicked over the conversion to take the game to within ten points at 19-10.

Both teams gave it their all for the last 10 minutes of the game, but a final flourish that saw a Ben Spencer penalty and a Nathan Earle try ensured a relatively comfortable victory for Saracens, making them Champions of England yet again.


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