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Sarries start the New Year with a win over old rivals

Cheltenham Saracens 25
Bream 5

On a day when most matches were cancelled, the conditions didn’t stop the home side from stamping their authority early as King George V hosted its first Gloucester Premier match of the year.

Directly following kick off, flanker Shaun Meheran charged down a kick allowing Brad Harris, who returned to fly-half, to scoop up the ball and glide over with the greatest of ease after six seconds. He also chalked up the extra two from the tee giving the Sarries a 7-0.Kyle

The play developed into a midfield battle following the early start but eventually the Saracens pressure paid off as they won a penalty in front of the posts which Harris slotted over.

The weather forced the play to become scrappy and the first half ended Saracens 10-0 Bream.

Saracens started the second half well with some strong running from centres Jack Lawrenson and James Butler before a kick over the rushing Bream defence allowed winger Hywel James to touch down. The try was disallowed however as the referee had not seen the grounding. From the resulting scrum, Sarries put phases together and James again found himself gliding over. This time it was counted but Harris missed the conversion.

mudAfter some scrappy play Bream won a penalty but failed to find touch. This allowed returning second row James Taylor to weave his way through the visiting defence before going to ground. From this a perfectly weighted pass from Kyle Thomas found hooker Aaron Connolly who stole the gap and offloaded to Meheran who dived over. The conversion was missed.

Bream managed to get a try on the board following a maul at the lineout. The conversion was missed but Saracens remained in the lead 20-5.

In the final dying seconds of the match, Saracens won a penalty on the Bream 5m line and a tap penalty quickly developed into a maul which drove over the line allowing captain James McMahon to snatch that bonus point to keep Saracens in touch with the teams at the top.The final conversion was just wide.

3rds finish the year in style

Cheltenham Saracens 3rds 25 v Cirencester 2nds 5

Following last weeks narrow defeat to cinderford, Cheltenham Saracens 3rds hosted top of the table Cirencester 2nds. With last minute cry offs, call ups and injuries the Saracens were down to the bear 15 with legend Andy green making up the 15. The opposition looked well drilled, big and fit but this did not deter the sarries.

The game started at a fierce pace with the Saracens really taking the game to Cirencester through powerful runs through Aiden Shearer, Andy James and centre Chris Jones. It was the Saracens who broke the deadlock through returning back row Tom Piff who as normal was everywhere around the park. Cirencester didn’t no wat had hit them after expecting a formality they were up for a battle. Cirencester as expected struck back with there big forwards trying to break the Saracens defence, but this was not to be big hits from Lewis, Clarke, Williams and Piff kept them at bay. I was the Saracens who were to score next through Andy Lewis a powerful line leaving defenders for dead. Converted by Vaughan.

Half time 12-0.

With a half time talk from pedro the Saracens took back to the field to finish what they had started. Unfortunately it wasn’t to go to plan with the Cirencester 10 crashing over from short range. 12-5. This was the last time Cirencester would cross the whitewash with the Saracens punishing the away teams lack of determination. The Saracens adding 2 more try’s throughJonathan Crowford and Kiwi Mourhinio. With Vaughan adding a penalty for good measure.

Final score 25-5.

This was a remarkable win for the Saracens 15 and there were numerous contenders for man of the match. The back 3 of Williams, Piff and shearer awesome in defence and attack, full back Crowford class in exit + attack and the centre pairing of Lewis and Jones. But for work rate, graft and dog man of the match goes to Tom Piff

2nds fly the flag at Stroud

Stroud 2nds 8 vs Chelt Saracens 2nds 26

With players travelling back home to the nether regions of the country it had a huge effect on the availability on all 3 of the Sarries sides this weekend. But the rally call went out and the One club Ethos was answered to make sure the club rightly honoured all 3 league fixtures.

A very young Stroud side impacted the game from the outset and we’re quick to run in the first score in as many minutes as the 5 for the score, unconverted. A massive warning and tactical thought process was required from the much changed Sarries side and was as simple as dominating the contact area, Set piece and the sublime Marcus Latchford tactically kicking in behind the Stroud backline for the rest of the 75 remaining minutes a real master class that left Stroud exasperated and frustrated. Stroud were now starting to give penalties away and with Latchford driving a forty yard penalty down to just outside the home sides 22. With the lineout throw gathered Sarries rock solid 8 unit trundled the Stroud 8 right up to the 5 metre line before the maul collapsed Sarries recycled the maul to quick fire rucking and after drawing in the Stroud back line the ball was span through the hands and flanker Dean Hobbs crossed the whitewash to level the scores. Latchford stepped up and added the 2 to nudge the visitors in front 5-7 but under no illusions they were in for a battle royal. Stroud clearing thier heads ventured some expansive rugby and forced themselves deep into the Saracens half and we’re awarded a penalty for their efforts which was despatched to squeeze them into a one point lead and calm their frustrations 8-7 Stroud. Saracens were now in the zone though and had worked out how to take it to the home side with the rolling maul gaining serious yardage on every occasion and on one carry the 8 drove over the home sides line and Junior McDaid dotted down and with Latchford again adding the conversion Sarries closed the half 8-14 up.

The second half was a carbon copy of the first Sarries frustrating Stroud time and again and controlling the game cleverly and as in the first half with every penalty given to Sarries did opt for the touch finder and unstoppable maul and on Two of these trundles it was McDaid to be in the driving seat at the back to claim the spoils and a hat trick Latchford also getting a hat trick of conversions adding Two more points and Saracens RFC with a very solid away win at Stroud 8-26.

Coaches MOM not easy as could be the whole 15. Martin Prosser’s work rate, physicality and management top notch, Will Hewer consistently solid each week, Marcus Latchford precission and seems unusual not to award a hatrick hero, but McDaid was slightly Eclipsed by Tom James who was a real force to be reckoned with and gave everything for the cause Quality!!

Sarries make it four wins in a row against Hucclecote

Cheltenham Saracens made if four wins on the bounce in Gloucester Premier with a solid 20-5 win over local rivals Hucclecote, a fixture where only a couple of points usually separate the teams.

Three tries secured the win in colder than usual conditions, but a good quality pitch and the wind dying off just before the kick-off made for an entertaining game.

Saracens dominated their Gloucester counterparts from the off, with solid defence stealing opposition yards, and a firing forward pack turning ball over regularly at the opposition set piece.

Saracens attacking structure was on form, forwards eagerly making themselves available to carry the ball in, making space for the backs out wide.

Threatening the line on numerous occasions to be judged held up, it was very much the Saracens in control of the game. Continuous pressure proved too much in the end, when a penalty was awarded and Hucclecote punished for three points by former player Brad Harris.

With intelligent kicking, Saracens continued to play in the right areas of the pitch, and it wasn’t long after a period of strategic phases that fly-half James Butler showed incredible strength to see off five defenders to wrestle over the line, which Harris duly converted. Another Harris penalty made the half time score 13-0 to the visitors.

The second half continued much the same as the first. Continuous pressure, from the awesome Sarries pack, was more than the Hucclecote defence could handle.

The devastating runs from substitute winger, Jonah Manu, strengthened the impact further.

Collecting the ball from deep and leaving a trail of yellow and black shirts in his wake, he never failed to make ground, and came inches short of crossing the whitewash on a number of occasions.

Captain James McMahon was also left frustrated, collecting from the base numerous times only to be judged held up.

The turning point of the game came after sustained attack from the home side on the half way line, a battering by the Saracens defence allowed Harris to get on the front foot and collect a looping pass from the opposition fly-half for an easy run in under the posts, converting it himself for a personal tally of 15 points against his old club.

Credit must go to Hucclecote, who’s attack from depth, especially on turnover and kick receipt was more effective than most teams in the league.

This combined with accurate kicking often turned the Sarries, and paid off giving them territory from which to attack from, and in the last 10 minutes, rewarded them with an unconverted try.


Sarries 2s maintain winning streak

Saracens 2nds 34 V’s Longlevens 2nds 17

This was to be Sarries second strings toughest game of the season to date. It was a strong and decently balanced outfit that popped down the Golden Valley under the leadership ship of powerful centre and captain Yorke.

It was the visitors whom hit the ground running and for the next 10 minutes it was all the Glos outfit running in a fine converted try 0-7 Levens. This time last year Saracens would not of had the temperament or unshakable belief of their abilities to weather such a rugby storm but believe they do and a halfway barnstorming run from Lloyd Arkell was not to be denied and trigger the next 70 minutes of first team level entertaining rugby unconverted 5-7.

Connor Patrick McDaid was up next for the home side capping of an excellent all round game from 15 Latchford again narrowly missing the extras and keeping the game tense at 10-7.

The second half belonged to the men of KGV opening up from every quarter and every player the off loading from hand and floor was done at pace and power and although Longlevens defended superbly Sarries were not to be denied and further scores came from Ryan White a brace, and Harry Lodge our very own quade cooper finishing off some unselfish handling from the back division.

There are countless contenders for MOM this week, John Welsh setting s serious weekly standards as player and captain. Chris ‘Dubs’Windley excellent 80 mins display at 2 countless balls against the head, turnover in the loose superb. The evergreen Peter Lodge was pumped up and showing every bit of knowledge and nouse that’s respected by all. The half back pairing of Louis Gilbert & Marcus Latchford was rock steady and guiding all game. Russell Thomas Morrison show and go followed by a stage perfect bow to the bench a winter warmer. But this week’s MOM has got to go to Ryan white outstanding at loose head in set piece and bagging tries week in and out like a good in form winger Quality display Ryan.