• Aviva Premiership

Saracens see off late Leicester fightback

ESPNscrum staff
October 3, 2010
Saracens climbed to third after their 26-20 win © Getty Images

Saracens climbed to third place in the Aviva Premiership table with a hard-fought 26-20 victory over Leicester Tigers in their clash at Vicarage Road.

Tries from hooker Schalk Brits and scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth and seven points from the boot of fly-half Derick Hougaard put Saracens in control after a keenly-contested opening period.

Leicester's dominant pack drew a penalty try late in the half - following a yellow card for Saracens prop Deon Carstens - but they otherwise struggled to contain the hosts.

London Irish strengthened their grip at the top of the Aviva Premiership table with a 40-24 victory over Leeds Carnegie at the Madejski Stadium.

Irish picked up their fourth bonus point of the season thanks to tries from James Buckland, George Stowers and Sailosi Tagicakibau(2). Ryan Lamb contributed 18 points with the boot.

Leeds put up a spirited fight with three scores of their own through Luther Burrell, Hendre Fury and Ceiron Thomas, but not for the first time this season they left a match that they contributed heavily towards with nothing to show for their troubles.

Irish are two points clear of Northampton, who made it four wins out of five games in this season's Aviva Premiership with a hard-fought 27-21 victory over Exeter at Franklin's Gardens.

Bruce Reihana contributed 17 points and passed a Premiership scoring landmark after being handed the kicking duties in preference to fly-half Shane Geraghty. The long-serving Kiwi went past the 1,000 point mark in the Aviva Premiership with his second penalty, after Exeter were caught offside in front of their own posts in the 16th minute. Saints had led 16-9 at the break thanks to Paul Diggin's try and three Reihana penalties, Gareth Steenson knocking over three penalties of his own for the visitors.

Two more Reihana penalties and a try from prop Soane Tonga'uhia sealed the home side's win, while Chris Budgen and Luke Arscott crossed to earn Exeter a losing bonus point.

Harlequins continued their resurgence with a 23-12 victory over Newcastle Falcons in their Aviva Premiership clash at the Twickenham Stoop.

A second half penalty try and a late score from replacement Tom Guest saw Quins notch only their second win of the season with Kiwi fly-half Nick Evans adding three penalties and two conversions. His opposite number and compatriot Jimmy Gopperth kept the Falcons in touch for much of the game with four penalties of his own but ultimately the visitors were made to pay for their failure to convert territory and possession into points.

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