Saracens’ new highly controversial tactic for match winning try
Saracens like to do things differently, they always have done, and that has made them plenty of enemies over the years and has won them many fans as well.
Well their match winning try against Gloucester was no different on Saturday at the StoneX Stadium. After trailing 36-20 with 20 minutes of the match remaining, Sarries found themselves losing 39-34 in the final play of the match with a lineout five metres from Gloucester’s line. Then they pulled something out which will inevitably receive some criticism. The London outfit pulled at 14-man maul out the bag.
Unsurprisingly, the hosts surged over the line, with Tom Woolstencroft getting the five points (his second of the match after being on the receiving end of another driving maul a few minutes before). Saracens have received plenty of flak in the past for some of their innovative ways of playing the game, and this is another different approach. For example, it was the ‘crab defence’ that was put under the spotlight last season, as they looked to have found another loophole in the law.
Basically, if it makes the game more boring, fans do not like it, and a 14-man maul probably falls into the boring category. But it was mightily effective. Of course, with only Max Malins standing in the backline, Gloucester would have been in for a try had they turned the ball over. Then again, it is very hard to turn the ball over against a 14-man maul, and if Gloucester had, they would have swiftly kicked it dead to finish the game.
Wales have used the same tactic before against the All Blacks, but everyone supported that as Wales were losing 33-0 at the time. Take a look:
Saracens’ try put the score level, with a tough kick from the sideline to give them the win. Then again, there aren’t many better players in the world to take the conversion than Owen Farrell, who got the two.
Take a look at the try: