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Leicester Tigers

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  1. Saracens claim title

    Saracens claim title

    Saracens were crowned Premiership champions after surviving an astonishing onslaught at the end to beat Leicester 22-18 at Twickenham. More

  • Live Commentary

    Time:80'
    • Leicester Tigers
    • Saracens
    • - Phew! Thanks for joining us this afternoon - and if you can take any more excitement, the Magners League final kicks off in about eight minutes time. Munster v Leinster LIVE!
    • - An absolutely incredible climax to the match, and though we'll applaud the Tigers for those incredible efforts at the end justice has certainly been done here today. Saracens were far better throughout and throoughly deserve a first English title!
    • 80'+9 The ball is spun out again - Flood nearly drops it, but recovers - yet from the breakdown Leicester blow it, giving away a penalty! Farrell hooves it out to finish the match! SARACENS ARE THE PREMIERSHIP CHAMPIONS!
    • 80'+9 Crane takes it into contact after an interminable delay... Still no sign of either side giving!
    • 80'+7 Leicester spin it out, but Sarries tackle - then go over the top! Penalty! 10m out, straight in front!
    • 80'+6 Saracens push Leicester back a few yards, but the Tigers still keep the ball...
    • 80'+5 23 phases and it still won't move!
    • 80'+4 The post looks like being crucial as the play moves to the centre...
    • 80'+3 Sarries push Leicester back, but then Jordan Crane - back on after blood treatment - is on the ball and trying to burrow through!
    • 80'+2 This is agony for both sets of fans! Leicester making inches but no more, still just over 5m out!
    • 80'+1 The clock into the red... Leicester still have the ball...
    • 80' Thirty seconds left... Saracens defnce holds firm...
    • 80' Leicester go for the maul from the throw. This move will decide the outcome of the season!
    • 79' Every wasted second plays into Saracens' hands... but now it's a penalty to Leicester! The ref runs out of patience as Saracens dither and the scrum collapses! Flood kicks for the corner, it'll be a throw in perhaps 15m out.
    • 78' The scrum keeps collapsing... as you'd probably escape from the make-or-break move of the match. This could take a while.
    • 77' Saracens breathe again as Hamilton drops a dolly of a pass under no pressure - it'll be a scrum, allowing us to enjoy a replay of Brits's incredible tackle on Tuilagi. That's the one to show to the under-12s in training... He was nerveless grabbing the big man's knees.
    • 76' Leicester suddenly turn up the heat! They're keeping the ball brilliantly - and now Tuilagi breaks! He's going to run it all the way in - BUT NO! Amazing saving tackle from Brits! What a hero he's been today!
    • 75' Five minutes left, four points in it, and the game remains anybody's...
    • 74' Steve Borthwick gives away a penalty straight from the restart as he's offside when trying to grab a ricocheting ball, and Flood cuts the gap to four points again!
    • 73' IT'S ANOTHER MAGICAL KICK FROM OWEN FARRELL! That was a brutal one under huge pressure, but the teenager slammed it clean through. Saracens can almost feel it now, and Leicester just don't seem to have the answers.
    • 72' Saracens turn the ball over shortly after the throw-in, and Leicester give away a penalty as Agulla puts his hands in the ruck utterly pointlessly. It's a tough effort for Farrell, far away on the left...
    • 71' Goode is there to collect the clearance, and he hits a cracking kick that runs almost to the corner flag. Leicester throw, but all the pressure is on them at the moment.
    • 70' Sarries patiently recycle the ball four times, but a missed pass hands it straight to Agulla who clears the decks.
    • 69' Sarries break - it's Brits again! What a game he's having! Leicester are lucky to avoid a penalty for a deliberate knock-on when Agulla's one-handed interception fails, but Sarries will keep the ball and attacking position deep in the Tigers' half.
    • 68' It's a tougher kick this time, 40m out and from the right - but this time the fly-half nails it straight down the middle. Leicester really haven't been at the races in this match but they're right there as we approach the final 10 minutes...
    • 67' Sarries substitute Vivyan - making a Premiership record appearance - is hammered for playing the ball on the floor, and it's yet another crack at the posts for Flood.
    • 66' Flood tries to release Smith on the left, but Saracens' defence holds firm.
    • 65' Leicester get back on the ball and will have the next chance to get something going.
    • 64' The way the game is going a gap is going to be left open any second now - it could end up deciding this game.
    • 63' Sarries again penalised for playing the ball on the floor, but Ben Youngs' effort to run the penalty from his own half backfires as he turns the ball over in the tackle.
    • 62' It's opening up as legs get tired, with Saracens on the ball now and switching back and forth in search of a defensive chink.
    • 61' Sarries bring on Du Plessis for Nieto as we enter the final 20m minutes.
    • 60' Sarries getting into the match once more after that period of Tigers' dominance, keeping the ball well now.
    • 59' Sarries are parked in the centre of the pitch, 20m out... now 18m... but Brown gives away a penalty for playing the ball on the ground. A great position wasted.
    • 58' Skivington boots the ball away in frustration as Leicester give away another penalty. Farrell kicks for touch, Sarries throw in deep in the Leicester 22m.
    • 57' From the restart Brits tries to get the Sarries fans going with a spectacular run. He's the best player on the pitch by some way at the moment.
    • 56' Flood really is kicking almost out of his own divot, just left of the sticks and 35m out... and he's done it again! What a shocker from the England fly-half!
    • 55' Great run by the awesome Tom Croft up the left, and from the resulting breakdown Kelly Brown is penalised for coming round the side. Flood will have almost a perfect reprise of that effort he missed a few moments ago.
    • 54' It's all Leicester at the moment, the Tigers so much better disciplined at keeping the ball.
    • 53' Missed it! Flood starts is just on line but the ball curls just the wrong side of the left post!
    • 53' Gill is penalised for poor scrummaging within moments of coming on, Flood will have another chance from around 35m and almost straight on to the posts.
    • 52' Schalk Brits puts a huge hit on Scott Hamilton and needs a bit of treatment. A normal person would have needed a big bit of treatment after that hit.
    • 51' Saracens are starting to lose their grip on the game now, as Matt Stevens comes off with Rhys Gill coming on.
    • 50' Wigglesorth comes on at scum-half for Saracens in that pre-arranged switch, while Crane replaced by Waldrom at number eight for the Tigers.
    • 49' Flood's long kick curls just inside the right post - the deficit is back to seven points.
    • 48' Leicester kick upfield but keep the pressure on and Saracens end up conceding a penalty, 40m out on the left half, just inside the 5m line.
    • 47' Leicester starting to put pressure on Saracens all of a sudden as they hang on to the ball well.
    • 46' Leicester keep it from the scrum and Tuilagi tries to run - well tackled though, and from the clearance Alex Goode takes the ball and blasts a good touch deep in the Tigers' 22m.
    • 45' Sarries punt up a high ball that Hamilton really doesn't handle well, and Leicester are lucky to end up winning a scrum just inside their own 22m.
    • 44' The 19-year-old uses every second allotted to him, but it's worthwhile as his 40m shot sails clean through the middle. Perfect kicking so far from Farrell - brilliant stuff.
    • 42' Penalty for Saracens as they put Leicester under pressure in the scrum. Farrell can make the deficit 10 points once more.
    • 41' We're back in action at Twickenham, and the way that match has gone Saracens are all of a sudden hot favourites to win. Can the Tigers get their teeth into this match?
    • - Leicester run down the clock tamely and Flood kicks the ball off the pitch to end the half.
    • 40' Ben Youngs tries something clever when taking the ball out of a ruck deep in his own 22m from the restart, and gets clobbered by black shirts. Tigers under pressure, but the clock is about to go red.
    • 39' Flood takes his time over the kick - he really doesn't want to miss this one - but then pops it cleanly through. Sarries will be furious at themselves for giving up that chance.
    • 37' Scrum to Leicester keeps on collapsing - and Matt Stevens is penalised for pulling down Castrogiovanni. It's a penalty straight in front, barely 25m out. Your gran could land this one.
    • 36' Big mistake from Leicester in the ruck as an infringement gives away a penalty right in ftont of the sticks. Farrell pumps it straight through, 16-6 to the underdogs.
    • 35' Another incredible break from Saracens, with Strettle looking like opening up Leicester until Joubert drops the offloaded pass - where is all this coming from? Supposedly-dull Saracens are cutting loose as if it's the last 10 minutes and they're chasing a deficit.
    • 34' Ernst Joubert has been off with a bit of blood, but now trots back on.
    • 33' The Tigers are trying to hang on to the ball a little better now, and get possession in the Saracens' half which seems like the first for ages.
    • 32' Penalty for Leicester after an infringement in the scrum. Flood kicks for touch rather than try a quick one.
    • 31' Straight from the re-start Saracens power back into the Leicester half - Brits breaks again and Toby Flood's tackle probably saves a try! Sarries recycle it, but Farrell then drops a pass to turn the ball over.
    • 30' That's a stunning piece of work by Brits to earn that try for Sarries, a magnificent run and Short was brilliantly quick in finishing off - only confirmed after a check with the video. Farrell then adds the extras with a massive kick from the left touchline that curls just inside the right post.
    • 29' TRY TO SARACENS! Lightning switch by Saracens, and Brits makes a stunning diagonal run that cuts the Tigers open! He's caught in the end but his offload is perfect and James Short manages to run it in at the corner!
    • 28' Leicester's Tuilagi ends up with the ball as Sarries clear it, but tries to break one tackle too many and Farrell snatches the ball and returns it with interest. Saracens break upfield!
    • 27' Leicester push forward from the throw-in but there's a knock on and Saracens get the ball back for a scrum.
    • 26' Leicester manage to break with a big kick upfield after Schalk Brits's run is ended by a big tackle (he'll need some magic drink to get back on his feet). The Tigers chase that kick but Goode is there and clears calmly under immense pressure.
    • 25' Saracens keep up the pressure, they are pinning Leicester back consistently.
    • 24' With the defence holding firm, Alex Goode tries a drop goal from 30m - but it's a mis-hit effort that squirts low and left.
    • 23' Owen Farrell looks to have taken a knock, but he's still in the mix as Sarries keep recycling, trying to get closer and closer in.
    • 22' Brad Barritt makes a run on the right and Saracens are back in the Leicester 22m!
    • 21' Farrell takes his time over the kick, but lands it nervelessly. 6-6.
    • 19' Saracens have probably had the better openings so far but little to show for it - but now George Chuter is penalised for coming in at the side and kicking the abll out of a ruck. Penalty right in front, 30m out.
    • 18' Flood's kick is from 35m out on the right, half-way to touch... and drilled cleanly through the middle of the posts.
    • 17' Penalty for offside after a moment's thoughtlessness by de Kock, picking a ball up while tracking back.
    • 16' Ben Youngs trots back on, and the Tigers will be very happy indeed to have put three points on Sarries while a man down.
    • 15' Bit of a missed chance for Saracens as Brown makes a great run but fails to offload to his two supporting men as Allen piles in to tackle.
    • 14' Neither side really bossing the other at the moment - it looks like being close all afternoon.
    • 13' An almost bizarre drop-goal attempt from Agulla, who has a crack from over 50m out on the flank. It falls a good 10m short and Flood is not happy.
    • 12' Saracens are penalised for pushing early in the scrum and lose that fantastic attacking position.
    • 11' Massive mess-up by Leicester! Youngs's pass-back from the restart is over Flood's head, and he sends it looping into the try area... but Youngs covers back to concede the 5m scum when the ball could just as easily have gone to one of the Saracens players.
    • 10' Flood's kick from the left half goes through, just inside the left post. It's 3-3.
    • 9' Penalty to Leicester! Saracens's Matt Stevens hangs onto the man in a tackle to try to check the Tigers' momentum, and Flood will have a chance from just outside the 22m.
    • 8' Leicester are pinned back from the restart, but Flood's long kick is chased - and caught - by Matt Smith. Tigers are in possession and on the move.
    • 7' Owen Farrell lands the kick, and it's first blood to Saracens as they lead 3-0.
    • 6' Ben Youngs gets sent to the sin bin for the cynical attempt to kill the ball and precent a try.
    • 6' De Kock makes a break! Incredible run, he blisters through the 22m and almost makes it to the line before being pulled down! And it's a penalty to Saracens on the line!
    • 5' Barritt tries to make a surging run through for Sarries and carries into the 22 before being cut down.
    • 4' First penalty of the match against Leicester for not releasing in the tackle. Farrel kicks for touch between the 10m and the 22m.
    • 3' Agulla clears from almost under his own posts but misses a touch as he tries to chew too much off - Sarries boot it straight back though. Nobody wanting to try too much just yet.
    • 2' Solid start for Leicester as they pressurise Saracens on their own 22 from kick-off, but Alex Goode clears to touch.
    • 1' Toby Flood kicks off for Leicester to get the match under way.
    • 14:58 The players are running out onto the pitch, and we're just moments from kick-off at Twickenham.
    • 14:56 De Kock will make way for Richard Wigglesworth after 50 minutes in a pre-ordained switch, incidentally, though you have to wonder what Sarries will do if de Kock is on fire and ripping Leicester to shreds.
    • 14:55 Neil de Kock starts at scrum-half for Saracens. In the nicest possible way, this is conclusive proof that he is a lucky tosser. Sarries choose scrum-half with coin toss
    • 14:52 Leicester actually won two matches fewer than Sarries this season, but finished two points ahead of them. That tells you everything you need to know about their try-scoring power, giving the Tigers plenty of bonus points as they have scored nearly twice as many tries as their opponents this season. But Saracens would happily take another ground-out victory over scoring four tries in a glorious defeat!
    • 14:51 It's only fair that these two sides are competing in this final: they have been the class sides of the season, with just two points separating Leicester at the top from second-placed Saracens in the table.
    • 14:50 "Last year we didn't have the self-belief. This year we're completely different," said Sarries chief Mark McCall. Considering that they've beaten the Tigers twice this year, he he may well be right.
    • 14:45 What a contrast between these sides: Leicester are looking for an incredible 10th title, while Saracens are looking to earn their first.
    • 14:40 Leicester are the bookies' favourites this afternoon, with the Tigers 9/13 on while Sarries are 13/8.
    • 14:35 It's cool, cloudy and breezy at Twickenham today for the match - with that wind strong enough to make kicking a tricky proposition this afternoon.
    • 14:30 Today marks an amazing culmination for Matt Stevens's comeback after his drug ban. It'll be an emotional return to Twickenham for the former England star.
    • 14:25 The big team news is that Matt Smith replaces Manu Tuilagi in the starting line-up for Leicester. Tuilagi of course is suspended for punching Chris Ashton in the head.
    • 14:20 Welcome to our LIVE coverage of the play-off final between Leicester and Saracens.
  • Summary

    Leicester Tigers versus Saracens
      Tries Short 28’
      Conversions Farrell 29’
    Flood 9’, 18’, 38’, 49’, 68’, 74’ Penalties Farrell 7’, 20’, 35’, 43’, 73’
      Drops  

Live Team Line-Up

  • Leicester Tigers

    Manager: Matt O'Connor

    On the Field

    Subs

    • Grindal
    • Staunton
    • Waldrom Substitution In (49′)
    • Hawkins Substitution In (69′)
    • Stankovich Substitution In (77′)
    • Cole Substitution In (53′)
    • Twelvetrees Substitution In (75′)
    • Slater Substitution In (71′)

    Injured

    None

    Suspended

    None

  • Saracens

    Manager: Brendan Venter

    On the Field

    Subs

    • Vyvyan Substitution In (56′)
    • Wigglesworth Substitution In (49′)
    • Mordt
    • Cato
    • Saull Substitution In (29′) Substitution Out (33′)
    • Gill Substitution In (52′)
    • du Plessis Substitution In (60′)
    • George

    Injured

    None

    Suspended

    None

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