Harlequins vs Saracens – Report – Aviva Premiership 2018 – 3 Dec, 2017


Two tries in the final 10 minutes at the Stoop gave Harlequins a dramatic 20-19 Aviva Premiership victory over Saracens.

Danny Care was the architect for both — as he was for his side’s opening score — as Charlie Walker and Tim Visser profited from the England scrum-half’s intelligent kicking.

Saracens conceded territory and possession for much of the match but appeared to be on course for a first win in five matches thanks to Brad Barritt’s early try and 11 points from the boot of Owen Farrell.

Barritt crossed for the game’s opening score within the first two minutes in south-west London as Saracens built an early 10-point lead but Quins were not overawed.

Indeed, the hosts spent much of the opening period on the front foot and were unfortunate not to be awarded a try of their own in the 22nd minute as Elia Elia appeared to get the ball down.

Referee Luke Pearce adjudged that the hooker had been held up, but Quins refused to whither and got on the scoreboard four minutes later as Walker collected Care’s crossfield kick to dot down on the right wing.

Saracens improved in the second half and looked to be heading for victory as Farrell and James Lang — a late inclusion for Quins after Marcus Smith failed a fitness test — traded penalties.

But that was before Care took over. First, the scrum-half took a quick penalty and aimed a grubber kick through the Saracens defence that Walker again latched onto.

Quins were then awarded a debatable penalty with time running out as Will Skelton tackled Lang on halfway. The fly-half booted it to the corner, and having won the lineout Care again took the aerial option.

His kick was not inch-perfect but Saracens fullback Alex Goode was unable to cut it out, allowing Visser to snaffle possession and gleefully dive over in the left corner.

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