Heineken Champions Cup: Big Mak and tries on the menu as Saracens taste European qualification in France’s food capital
BIG MAK and tries was on the menu as Saracens tasted European qualification in France’s food capital.
Sarries masterchef Mako Vunipola cooked-up the assists for both of their first-half scores in Lyon.
Inpho Mako Vunipola picked up the man-of-the-match award after an impressive performance in Lyon[/caption]
And on his 50th Champions Cup game the England ace made a meal out of the Top14 side in their bonus-point hammering at the Matmut Stadium.
Vunipola senior will be in Eddie Jones’ Six Nations squad on Thursday after helping his club go into the final weekend as the top seeds.
And younger brother Billy, back after breaking his arm three times in just 10 months, will also return the Test circuit despite a quiet game in club colours by his usual world-class standards.
Sarries are also now the tournament’s only unbeaten side after losses for French giants Toulouse and Racing 92 this weekend.
Getty Images – Getty Vunipola senior will be in Eddie Jones’ Six Nations squad while younger brother Billy, back after breaking his arm three times in just 10 months, will also return the Test circuit[/caption]
Though as has often been the case this season, though, they had it far from their own way and had to fight and scrap their way to victory.
Former England under-20s star Nick Tompkins got on the end of front-rower Vunipola’s first assist with flanker Jackson Wray on hand to touch down the second.
Tompkins, who might have to battle with Elliot Daly for the no.13 shirt next season if the Wasps star can get himself out of his contract at the Ricoh Arena, then proved he can be just as lethal a finisher as the Lion.
From the back of a driving maul the 23-year-old unleashed some gas and a huge side-step as he powered over the line for his second – despite four Lyon defenders desperatley trying to tackle him.
AFP or licensors Nick Tompkins got on the end of front-rower Vunipola’s first assist with flanker Jackson Wray on hand to touch down the second[/caption]
It soon turned from the beauty to the beastly as Maro Itoje was yellow carded for slapping the ball out of Charl McLeod’s hands.
Lyon replacement prop Albertus Buckle was then lucky to only be sent to the bin as he stamped on Wallaby Will Skelton’s giant tree-trunk legs.
Restoring some class, as he always does, was Sarries full-back Alex Goode.
The man who should be playing for England carved Lyon up with a jinking run before slipping the ball to Ben Spencer to bag the extra point.
AFP or licensors Saracens dished out a 28-10 thrashing in the Champions Cup today[/caption]
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©Matthew Impey / Wired Photos Sports wiredphotos.co.uk +44 7789 130347 Nick Tompkins celebrates scoring the opening try with Owen Farrell[/caption]
Alexi Palisson scored and converted the hosts only try to add to fly-half Jonathan Wisniewski’s early drop goal.
With Sarries through, now it’s down to the final weekend to see if Exeter Chiefs can join therm as the second side to halt the Irish and French charge.