|Heineken Champions Cup final|
|Leinster (10) 10|
|Try: Furlong Con: Sexton Pen: Sexton|
|Saracens (10) 20|
|Tries: Maitland, Vunipola Cons: Farrell 2 Pen: Farrell 2|
Saracens came from behind to win their third European title in four years with a 20-10 victory over Leinster in the Champions Cup final at St James’ Park.
The Irish side held a 10-point lead until the 39th minute but Sarries drew level when Sean Maitland’s try cancelled out Tadhg Furlong’s opener.
Both defences stood firm after the interval but Owen Farrell kicked Saracens in front just before the hour.
Victory was sealed when Billy Vunipola crashed over from the back of a scrum.
Farrell kicked the conversion as the Londoners scored 20 unanswered points and put in a dominant second-half performance.
Saracens will play a Premiership semi-final later this month as they continue to pursue the double, while Leinster remain on course to defend their Pro14 title.
Farrell wins the battles of the 10s
The 2019 Champions Cup final was dubbed as the battle of the fly-halves as international heavyweights Owen Farrell and Johnny sexton renewed their rivalry.
Both players were 100% successful off the tee but it was Englishman Farrell who was the more influential as Saracens avenged last year’s quarter-final defeat by taking Leinster’s crown and returning to the top of the pile among Europe’s elite.
The England co-captain produced a few moments of excellence to draw his side level at half-time, having only conceded seven points with Maro Itoje in the sin-bin after waves of relentless Leinster running.
Farrell kicked the penalty to get Sarries on the scoreboard before his deft pass allowed Maitland an easy run-in to score their opening try, in a move BBC Radio 5 Live pundit Matt Dawson believed was “straight off the training ground”.
Sexton ran more metres and made more passes than his opposite number, but Farrell’s cool temperament and game management in the critical moments allowed his side to gain an advantage.
Farrell and Saracens will now return to domestic rugby hoping to claim more silverware before all attention turns to Japan and the World Cup in September.
More to follow.
Leave a Reply