Bath 31-21 Saracens

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Saracens have been European champions for the past two seasons
Aviva Premiership
Bath: (14) 31
Tries: Louw, Rokoduguni 2 Cons: Burns 2 Pens: Priestland 2 Dropgoal: Priestland 2
Saracens: (0) 21
Tries: Penalty, Spencer Pens: Lozowski, Farrell 2 Con: Farrell

Semesa Rokoduguni’s late brace clinched victory for Bath against Saracens in a thriller at the Recreation Ground.

The hosts raced into a 14-0 lead courtesy of the boot of Rhys Priestland and a try from Francois Louw.

After the break Mark McCall’s side got back to 17-16 with a penalty try, before Ben Spencer put them two points ahead with seven minutes to play.

However, Rokoduguni and Bath were not finished, and the winger’s pace and power won the game for the hosts.

Bath remain unbeaten at home since March, while Saracens are off to Philadelphia to face Newcastle Falcons in their next Premiership match.

From the outset Bath dominated the possession, and the combination of Kahn Fotuali’i – on the field for an injured Chris Cook – Taulupe Faletau and Matt Banahan caught Saracens off guard.

The trio’s slick handling created space out wide and flanker Francois Louw flew in for a five-pointer on the left wing.

Two further Priestland penalties pushed the hosts out to a comfortable lead at the break, but the introduction of Saracens’ British and Irish Lions saw them find their cohesion.

After further penalties cut their deficit, Ben Spencer pushed the visitors ahead for the first time on 73 minutes.

A late injury to Anthony Watson saw Bath again finishing a match without 15 players on the field but Rokoduguni – who had been in defensive mode for much of the game – stepped up.

The winger’s electric footwork made quick work of Saracens’ famed defence and with the time in red his final interception sealed a memorable victory for Todd Blackadder and his side.

Bath: Watson; Rokoduguni, Joseph, Clark, Banahan; Priestland, Cook; Obano, Dunn, Perenise, Charteris, Stooke, Garvey (capt), Louw, Faletau.

Replacements: Walker, Auterac, Andrews, Phillips, Grant, Fotuali’i, Burns, Tapuai.

Saracens: Goode; Earle, Taylor, Barritt (capt), Wyles; Lozowski, Wigglesworth; Barrington, Brits, Koch; Day, Itoje; Rhodes, Burger, Wray.

Replacements: Tolofua, Vunipola, Figallo, Isiekwe, Earl, Spencer, Farrell, Williams.


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