Top class

Our experts on Saturday's Premiership action involving title-chasing trio Saracens, Quins and Leicester.

Last Updated: 17/02/13 at 14:49

Our expert pundits analysed a fascinating afternoon of Premiership Rugby action on Saturday as the top three were all in action...

First up were Saracens, who moved to the top of the Premiership with a comfortable victory over Exeter in the first league match to be played at the Allianz Park. However, their stay at the top of the table didn't last long as Harlequins fought back to beat Leicester in a superb encounter at the Twickenham Stoop.

Here's what the Sky Sports experts Dewi Morris, Will Greenwood and Pat Sanderson made of it:

Saracens 31-11 Exeter

Dewi Morris: This was the perfect day for Saracens. They had a few wobbles early on when Charlie Hodgson wasn't kicking his goals but the power and professionalism of the pack came through. Mouritz Botha carried superbly and I wonder whether Stuart Lancaster will start him in one of the Six Nations games, maybe against Italy? I think he deserves to be seen at the next level.

But it was a tremendous all-round performance, especially in the second half, and they fully deserved it.

They kicked a lot in the first half of the season. That's the Money Ball way, the statistical way and the winning way. But now they're trying to change it slightly and put their hands on it. It will come - and it looks good for them for the end of the season.

Will Greenwood: in the first half Saracens' error count was too high but they went into the sheds and then came out in the second half a much better side; their error count was down, they were direct and aggressive.

There are still question marks about Saracens ability to put the tries away out wide - they made too many errors in the 15m channels - but in terms of their pack, they were ferocious.

They've got a really good, solid platform now: their line outs are always exceptional, their scrums are performing well, they're great at the breakdown and they're carrying and offloading really well.

Harlequins 25-21 Leicester

Morris: The most important person on the pitch is the scrum half and I think Stuart Lancaster will be watching Danny Care and thinking 'wow'. We've got Ben Youngs in pole position at the moment, but Care can come on and do stuff. His try takes some finishing but it was superb and to have someone like that who can change a game is crucial. The inventiveness of this guy is sensational.

Greenwood: Leicester are missing a heck of a lot of players but they're strong, they're powerful, they're confrontational and they'll be right in the mix at the back end of the season. Quins will be chuffed, though. They were 18-12 down, so to come back and recover is hugely important because back-to-back defeats would have dented them.

Pat Sanderson: There's nothing to choose between the top three. On their day any one of those three can beat the other. It's going to be a cracking end of the season.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

E

ven if United were to sign CR7 & Messi to play upfront, the fact remains Fletcher and Cleverly are playing in midfield. That's where the problem is. Fletcher is too slow with an awful pass, while Cleverly is simply rubbish

mrunited4life
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

T

hese days, these days, you can't say something racist without somebody saying that you're a racist.

tk421
'Wrong' Views Not Silenced By Shouting...

D

rop Rooney (he's so disappointing, overrated and overpaid), and play Di Maria and RVP upfront, much like the set up at the Netherlands team with Roben and RVP...

eric bush3
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

Footer 365

Manchester United signing Angel di Maria claims he was forced out of Real Madrid

Manchester United signing Angel di Maria has claimed he never wanted to leave Real Madrid.

Transfer news: Tottenham midfielder Lewis Holtby interests Hamburg

Hamburg director Dietmar Beiersdorfer has confirmed the club’s interest in Tottenham midfielder Lewis Holtby.

Transfer News: Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger won't panic buy a striker

Arsene Wenger has insisted Arsenal will not panic buy a striker, if Olivier Giroud is ruled out for a lengthy spell.

Mail Box

Well, This Isn't Going That Well Is It?

Plenty of fall out from Manchester United's shambolic 4-0 League Cup defeat, plus thoughts on Van Persie, Arsenal strikers, Benik Afobe, Celtic and Astroturf...

Not Getting Carried Away On Spurs... But

A couple of Spurs fans have broken rank to admit that they are bloody excited about things down the Lane. Plus Glen Johnson, Arsene on strikers and Moreno...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property