Sarries down Gloucester to surge into Challenge Cup semifinals
CHALLENGE CUP REPORT: Saracens overwhelmed English rivals Gloucester 44-15 on Friday to book their place in the last four of the European Challenge Cup.
The visitors ran in five tries, with southwest side Gloucester managing just two as they suffered a pair of yellow cards.
Saracens’ Aled Davies, Maro Itoje, Jamie George, Duncan Taylor and Nick Tompkins crossed the Cherry and Whites’ tryline, with England’s Owen Farrell converting all five scores and also kicking three penalties.
Jack Singleton and Wales wing Louis Rees-Zammit went over for Gloucester, with their other points coming from a Billy Twelvetrees conversion and a penalty from Scotland’s Adam Hastings.
Saracens will play the winners of Sunday’s match between French club Toulon and London Irish in the semifinals.
Saracens opened the scoring in just the fifth minute, when Farrell landed a straightforward penalty before Davies scored the first try after good work by South Africa prop Vincent Koch.
The hosts fell further behind when Farrell kicked a penalty after wing Ollie Thorley – on his 100th appearance for southwest club Gloucester – was sin-binned for a high tackle.
Gloucester got back into the contest when, with Saracens and England hooker Jamie George in the sin-bin, Singleton scored off a line-out drive.
Farrell’s third penalty made it 16-5 to London club Saracens at half-time.
Hastings’s penalty reduced the deficit, only for England forward Maro Itoje to force his way over off a close-range scrum for Saracens’ second try.
Saracens put the result beyond doubt when Wales’s Tompkins crowned a driving line-out after Gloucester prop Val Rapava-Ruskin was sin-binned for deliberately slowing down opposition ball.
George went over in similar fashion, with Farrell’s kick leaving Saracens 37-8 up heading into the final quarter.
Taylor’s interception gave Sarries their fifth try before Rees-Zammit’s solo effort completed the scoring.
Tries: Singleton, Rees-Zammit
Tries: Davies, Itoje, Tompkins, George, Taylor
Cons: Farrell 5
Pens: Farrell 3
Phenomenal away display from @Saracens 👊
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) May 6, 2022