Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sarries Go Shopping?

As previously mentioned, I'm a bit mobility-challenged at the moment, and so wasn't able to attend Saracens' fantastic win over Leicester Tigers at the weekend. Looks like I missed a cracker, which was 11-all at half time, but Saracens piled on the pressure in the second half, and finished 26-19 winners. Old boy Kris Chesney [left] and new blood Adam Powell [right] scored one try apiece after the break.

After five games, the win takes Sarries up to the heady heights of second in the Guinness Premiership table [see below]. Even after their success last season, they never got that high! Let's hope the guys can keep up the momentum.

I notice that Bath are doing rather well too, considering their woeful form at the back end of last season. And from the table above, Leicester and Wasps are obviously struggling to retain some form with a large contingent of their players away on World Cup duty.

Talking of that, it looks like Eddie Jones might have persuaded young Takudzwa Ngwenya to come to Sarries for a month's trial, hot on the heels of his World Cup performance. I can't believe the way he outstripped Bryan Habana for a fantastic try when the USA played the Springboks.

[Ngwenya lines up Simon Shaw for a tackle in the England vs USA match]

The lad's obviously not scared of putting in big hits in defence, either, as the photo above shows - the next frame showed Simon Shaw in a heep with Ngwenya buried underneath!

I've not kept tabs on Saracens transfer list very well this season - there have been a few changes, but nothing link the revolving door of a few seasons ago. Here's a roundup:

Out: Simon Raiwalui (Racing Metro), Ben Russell (Racing Metro), Ben Broster (Llanelli Scarlets), Thomas Castaignede [right] (retired), Shane Byrne (released), Tevita Vaikona (released), Ben Johnston (Brive), Tomas de Vedia (London Irish).

In: Chris Jack [left] (Canterbury Crusaders), Matias Aguero (Viadana), Gordon Ross (Castres), Edd Thrower (Wasps)

I'm particularly going to miss the mercurial M. Castaignede, who was always a joy to watch when he was fit and in form. I've enjoyed his commentary stints for ITV's World Cup coverage too, so perhaps we'll see Thomas the pundit more in the future. But I'm also looking forward to seeing the new signings in action, particularly the towering 6'8" of Chris Jack in the lineout!

I'm hoping to be at the Bristol game on 4th November, when all the World Cup matches will be done and dusted, and we shall have been put out of our misery, knowing whether or not England pulled off the seemingly impossible! Still pinching myself that we're in the final, frankly!

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