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Saracens beat Glasgow to reach Champions Cup last four

Saracens beat Glasgow to reach Champions Cup last four

Wing David Strettle was a late replacement for Owen Farrell
bbc.comSaracens reached the Champions Cup semi-finals with a clinical seven-try victory against Glasgow Warriors.Glasgow scrum-half Ali Price and Saracens full-back Liam Williams both scored in a frantic first five minutes.Momentum swung Sarries' way after tries from David Strettle and Brad Barritt, before two Adam Hastings penalties reduced the hosts' lead to nine.
But second-half scores for Williams, Strettle, Jamie George and Nick Tompkins sealed the win for Saracens.Replacement scrum-half George Horne and number eight Matt Fagerson scored consolation tries for Glasgow, whose hopes of reaching the Champions Cup last four for the first time have ended.Two-time champions Saracens play Munster in the semi-finals in three weeks' time.
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Mark McCall's side were the only club to win all six of their pool stage matches and continued that form to reach a seventh Champions Cup semi-final.England captain Owen Farrell was a late withdrawal after his wife went into labour, but Alex Goode proved himself a worthy replacement with his role in Saracens' first score.With England head coach Eddie Jones watching in the crowd, the fly-half sent a perfectly weighted kick for Wales back Williams to go over under the posts Centre Alex Lozowski had no issues taking on kicking duties in Farrell's absence either, missing just one of his 10 kicks.
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Alex Goode moved from full-back to fly-half in Owen Farrell's absenceSaracens' strength was highlighted by the fact that, though Warriors' defence was almost flawless in the first half, it was not enough to keep the current English champions out.After Strettle eventually broke through to score, Barritt found space to go over thanks to deft offloads from the Saracens backs.Glasgow's defence struggled more in the second half as Williams' scythed through for his second try before Strettle intercepted Stafford McDowall's pass to add five more points.George then got on the scoresheet after crossing in a driving maul and replacement Nick Tompkins finished off a slick attacking move to take Saracens over 50 points. But the game ended on a low for the hosts, as captain Barritt left the field on a stretcher with a leg injury.
A big ask for Glasgow
In contrast to Saracens' pedigree, Warriors were contesting the Champions Cup knockout stages for just the second time and they had only won once in the sides' previous 10 meetings.Injuries to six of Glasgow's players made the task even tougher, though they were boosted by the return of Scotland back Stuart Hogg.The 26-year-old, who has been injured for seven weeks, had an immediate impact as he displayed impressive footwork to create space for Price to score in the left corner.But Hoggs' kicking game let him down and Adam Hastings had to step up in that area - scoring a gutsy penalty from just inside Saracens' half.The full-back was involved in Glasgow's penultimate try, finding a gap to send replacement George Horne over before Fagerson added a third for the visitors.
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Saracens: Williams; Maitland, Lozowski, Barritt (c), Strettle; Goode, Spencer; Barrington, George, Judge, Skelton, Kruis, Itoje, Wray, VunipolaReplacements: Woolstencroft, Lamositele, Koch, Isiekwe, Burger, Whiteley, Tompkins, StrettleGlasgow: Hogg; Steyn, McDowall, Johnson, Hughes; Hastings, Price; Kebble, Brown, Fagerson, Swinson, Cummings, Harley, Gibbins (c), Fagerson Replacements: Bryce, Bhatti, Halanukonuka, Gray, Fusaro, G Horne, P Horne, Matawalu Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
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