Sarries blow Clermont away

Sat, 26 Apr 2014 17:25
Large sarries dive630

Saracens will play in their first European Cup final after they beat Clermont Auvergne 46-6 at Twickenham on Saturday.

Saracens will play in their first European Cup final after they blew Clermont Auvergne away in a 46-6 semifinal victory at Twickenham on Saturday.

It ws a day of records for the English club as they eclipsed Leicester Tigers and London Wasps' previous highest score in a semifinal of 37 points and also took the biggest winning margin up to 40 points from Toulouse' previous best of 27.

England wing Chris Ashton sped clear in the eighth minute to give the Premiership leaders the perfect start against French giants Clermont Auvergne with a try that drew him level with former Brive flyer Sebastien Carrat on 10 tries in one season. Then he pounced again in the second half to make the recod his own.

Carrat had held the record on his own for 17 years, but there was no stopping Ashton at Twickenham and he stil has the European Cup final to go in Cardiff on Saturday, 24 May. Where he led in the first half, so Owen Farrell followed in a first half that also included a penalty try.

Clermont were hoping to make it two successive finals, but that early try, and the penalty try in the unlucky 13th minute, knocked them completley out of their stride. They had a 24th minute try by centre Benson Stanley ruled out for crossing earlier in the move and in the absence of skipper Aurelien Rougerie they struggled to find ways to break down the Sarries defence.

As for Saracens, it was third time lucky for them at the semifinal stage and made up for their bitter disappointment of losing at the same venue at the same stage last year.

Alex Goode added a near touchline conversion to Ashton's opening score and then easily converted a penalty try awarded by Welsh referee Nigel Owens after he spotted Brock James deliberately knocking a high ball out of play in his own dead ball area. James received a yellow card to leave his side trailing 14-3 with 14 men.

The Saracens loose forwards made life increasingly uncomfortable for the Frenchmen at the breakdown and Jacques Burger led the tackle count as every alleyway was blocked for Clermont. Morgan Parra added a second penalty before half time, but Saracens added a third try before the break when an inside pass from Ashton in the Clrmont 22 went forward off Farrell's knee and he picked up to cross for another try.

Goode added another conversion and then kicked a penalty to make it 24-6 to Saracens at the break and put them on the road to notching a first win over Clermont in four attenpts in the tournament.

The second half was a stalemate until Argentine centre Marcelo Bosh laned a penalty off the halfway line in the 54th minute and then Ashton capitalised on an aggressive tackle by Farrell that forced Ti'i Paulo to lose the ball as he hacked on twice to score his record breaking try.

Goode was unable to convert that try, but the England fullback ended with a flourish as he added the extras to two more tries from replacements Chris Wyles and Tim Steather a Saracens romped into the European Cup final.

The scorers:

For Saracens:
Tries:
Ashton 2, Penalty Try, Farrell, Wyles, Streather
Cons: Goode 5
Pens: Goode, Bosch

For Clermont:
Pens: Parra 2

Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 David Strettle, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Neil de Kock, 8 Billy Vunipola , 7 Jacques Burger, 6 Kelly Brown, 5 Mouritz Botha, 4 Steve Borthwick (captain), 3 James Johnston, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 Mako Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 Jamie George, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 Matt Stevens, 19 Alistair Hargreaves, 20 Jackson Wray, 21 Richard Wiggleworth, 22 Tim Streather, 23 Chris Wyles.

Clermont: 15 Lee Byrne, 14 Sitiveni Sivivatu, 13 Benson Stanley, 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Naipolioni Nalaga, 10 Brock James, 9 Morgan Parra, 8 Fritz Lee, 7 Damien Chouly, 6 Julien Bonnaire (captain), 5 Nathan Hines, 4 Jamie Cudmore, 3 Davit Zirakashvili, 2 Benjamin Kayser, 1 Thomas Domingo.
Replacements: 16 Ti'i Paulo, 17 Vincent Debaty, 18 Clément Ric, 19 Julien Piere, 20 Gerhard Vosloo, 21 Thierry Lacrampe, 22 Mike Delany, 23 Noa Nakaitaci.

Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Alain Rolland (Ireland); Leighton Hodges (Wales)

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 30 September 2016
Golden Lions v Sharks 15h00 Johannesburg
EP Kings v Pumas 16h00 Nelspruit
Western Province v Boland 17h10 Cape Town
Dragons v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Rodney Parade
Connacht v Edinburgh 18h35 Sportsground
Bristol v Saracens 18h45 Ashton Gate
Northampton Saints v Exeter Chiefs 18h45 Franklin's Gardens
Sat, 01 October 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Griquas 12h00 Bloemfontein
Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers 13h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
South Africa v Australia 15h05 Loftus Versfeld
Munster v Zebre 16h00 Thomond Park
Argentina v New Zealand 17h10 Ascoli Piceno
Ulster v Ospreys 17h30 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Leinster 18h35 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Cardiff Blues v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Stadio Monigo
Sun, 02 October 2016
Wasps v Harlequins 13h30 Ricoh Arena
Worcester Warriors v Newcastle Falcons 14h00 Sixways
EUROPEAN CUP
MORE LOGS
Pool 1
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 0 0 0 0 0
Leicester Tigers 0 0 0 0 0
Munster 0 0 0 0 0
Racing Metro 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 2
Team P W D L Pts
Connacht 0 0 0 0 0
Toulouse 0 0 0 0 0
Wasps 0 0 0 0 0
Zebre 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 3
Team P W D L Pts
Sale Sharks 0 0 0 0 0
Toulon 0 0 0 0 0
Saracens 0 0 0 0 0
Scarlets 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 4
Team P W D L Pts
Castres 0 0 0 0 0
Leinster 0 0 0 0 0
Montpellier 0 0 0 0 0
Northampton Saints 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 5
Team P W D L Pts
Clermont Auvergne 0 0 0 0 0
Bordeaux 0 0 0 0 0
Exeter Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0
Ulster 0 0 0 0 0