Mills' boot beats Sarries
MATCH REPORT: Flyhalf Ryan Mills kicked all of Worcester Warriors’ points as they secured a crucial 24-18 win over reigning Premiership Rugby champions Saracens.
The win moves the Warriors five points ahead of Bristol Rugby at the bottom of the league table and was their first win over Saracens since November 2012.
Mills kicked eight of nine attempts at goal while tries for Chris Ashton and Schalk Brits got the tries for Saracens who also had Mike Ellery sent to the sin bin.
The Warriors flyhalf, after missing a fourth minute penalty, put the Warriors in front when he slotted his second attempt five minutes later.
And the flyhalf doubled the home side’s advantage after Premiership Rugby champions were penalised for not rolling away from the tackle.
Saracens were then reduced to 14 men as Mike Ellery was punished for a late tackle on scrumhalf Francois Hougaard and Mills made it 9-0 with 27 minutes played.
Saracens were on the board before half-time as Ashton raced onto a through clever kick from Richard Wigglesworth.
Alex Lozowski added the extras but there was still time for Mills’ fourth penalty of the half and the home side went into the break with a 12-7 lead.
The Saracens flyhalf had an opportunity to reduce the deficit four minutes into the second half but his kick from the tee drifted wide.
Mills added kicked his fifth successful penalty with half an hour still to play but Lozowski replied instantly after the Warriors were penalised for being ahead of the kicker.
Warriors stretched their lead to eight points with 57 minutes gone after earning a penalty at the lineout which was marched back ten metres by referee Tom Foley.
And with their growing confidence, Warriors’ Ryan Bower charged into the Saracens 22 forcing the visitors to infringe and Mills made them pay with his seventh penalty to make it 21-10.
Flyhalf Mills should have been over the tryline with 65 minutes played but dropped the ball after stepping through a hole in the Saracens defence.
And the win was all but secured with nine minutes left to play as Saracens were penalised for having their hands on the floor and Mills kicked his eighth penalty of the day.
Saracens fought back and had their second try just two minutes later as Schalk Brits touched the ball down from the back of a driving maul but Lozowski missed the conversion to leave the score 24-15.
Warriors’ Josh Adams was shown a late yellow card with Lozowski successfully slotting a late penalty to earn his side a losing bonus point.
Pens: Mills 8
Tries: Ashton, Barritt
Pens: Lozowski, Spencer
Yellow Card: Ellery (Saracens)
Worcester: 15 Josh Adams, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Wynand Olivier, 12 Jackson Willison, 11 Perry Humphreys, 10 Ryan Mills, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Alafoti Faosiliva, 7 Sam Lewis, 6 Chris Vui, 5 Will Spencer, 4 Donncha O’Callaghan (captain), 3 Nick Schonert, 2 Jack Singleton, 1 Val Rapava Ruskin
Replacements: 16 Jaba Bregvadze, 17 Ryan Grant, 18 Biyi Alo, 19 Tevita Cavubati, 20 Marco Mama, 21 Luke Baldwin, 22 Ryan Lamb, 23 Ben Howard
Saracens: 15 Matt Gallagher, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Nick Tompkins, 12 Brad Barritt (captain), 11 Mike Ellery, 10 Alex Lozowski, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Jackson Wray, 7 Schalk Burger, 6 Will Fraser, 5 Jim Hamilton, 4 Michael Rhodes, 3 Petrus Du Plessis, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 Richard Barrington
Replacements: 16 Jared Saunders, 17 Titi Lamositele, 18 Juan Figallo, 19 Mark Flanagan, 20 Kelly Brown, 21 Ben Spencer, 22 Max Malins, 23 Marcelo Bosch
Referee: Tom Foley
Assistant Referees: Hamish Smales, Paul Dix
TMO: Keith Lewis