Lacroix rewrites Premiership record
November 7, 1999
Thierry Lacroix established a new Premiership kicking record as he landed nine penalties, scoring all of Saracens points in their 27-26 win over Wasps.
Western Samoa hooker Trevor Leota and England back row Lawrence Dallaglio, provided the groundwork for Wasps first try after just six minutes. The added muscle the pair provided in the wasps' pack allowed Leota to blaze through for the score.
However much of the opening exchanges were riddled with unforced errors and both sides elected to kick a succession of penalties.
Wasps forward pressure was the early difference with flanker Paul Volley easing the visitors further ahead with a well taken try and Leota adding his second moments before half-time.
However, Lacroix's unerring boot kept Saracens in touch as Wasps conspired to give away five penalties within the French fly-half's range during the first half.
The visitors ill-discipline continued after the break as Lacroix edged Saracens ahead for the first time with two further penalties.
England lock Danny Grewcock was on the field as a replacement for just six minutes before he throw his first punch of the Premiership season and was despatched to the sin bin with England team-mate and Wasps flanker Joe Worsley.
Although both teams were reduced to 14 men neither could capitalise on the extra space although Wasps centre Rob Henderson looked clear for a try until the referee put the brakes on his express train progress by ruling he had received a questionable forward pass.
Lacroix and Wasps winger Kenny Logan continued to exchange penalties as the lead swapped hands three times before the final whistle sealed the hosts maximum points.
Saracens coach Alan Zondagh admitted he was disappointed with his side's inability to put a try on the board, with Wasps outscoring their hosts by three tries.
"A win is a win but I'd have liked to have seen a try. That was not really the way I want to play but I'd rather win with penalties than drop goals," joked South African Zondagh. "The penalty count was high but that is not the fault of the players. The International Rugby Board must look at the rules because the situation at the moment is ruining the game."
All you have to do is keep possession in your opponent's half and sooner or later you get a penalty. It was a problem in the World Cup and it will be a problem in the Premiership."