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Owen Farrell a no show for Saracens against Bordeaux

By Ian Cameron
Owen Farrell, the Saracens captain, looks dejected after their defeat during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby match between Northampton Saints and Saracens at the cinch Stadium at Franklin's Gardens on March 29, 2024 in Northampton, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Saracens will face Bordeaux Begles in the Investec Champions Cup Round of 16 without star player Owen Farrell.

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The match set for this weekend at Stade Chaban-Delmas offers Saracens a chance to progress to the quarter final and seek redemption following a group stage defeat against the same opponent. Farrell’s absence due to a minor hamstring injury sustained against Northampton leaves a significant gap in the lineup.

However, the team will leverage the depth of its European champions including Mako Vunipola, captain Jamie George, and Christian Judge in the front row. Maro Itoje returns to bolster the second row alongside Hugh Tizard.

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Cheetahs coach Izak van der Westhuizen talks about playing in France

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Cheetahs coach Izak van der Westhuizen talks about playing in France

The back-row will see Theo McFarland, Ben Earl, and Billy Vunipola bringing their well-known dynamism and physicality. Alex Goode steps in as half-back partner to Ivan van Zyl in place of Farrell – who will be playing for Stuart Lancaster’s Racing 92 next season.

Fixture
Investec Champions Cup
Bordeaux
45 - 12
Full-time
Saracens
All Stats and Data

The midfield partnership of Nick Tompkins and Lucio Cinti remains intact while the back three comprises Alex Lewington, Sean Maitland, and Elliot Daly. The bench includes potential game-changers like Theo Dan, Marco Riccioni, and Juan Martin Gonzalez.

“There’s a really good energy around the place as we’ve got an unbelievable opportunity ahead of us,” said Tom Willis. “This club has a great history in Europe and the boys are all very excited for such a big game.

“After the last game there we had a lot of honest conversations about where we were at and we feel like we’ve kicked on since then. It’s a massive challenge but one that we will put all our energy in to.

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“Bordeaux is a place that means a lot to me after they gave me an opportunity, so personally it’s really exciting to be taking them on.”

SARACENS:
1 Mako Vunipola
2 Jamie George (c)
3 Christian Judge
4 Maro Itoje
5 Hugh Tizard
6 Theo McFarland
7 Ben Earl
8 Billy Vunipola
9 Ivan van Zyl
10 Alex Goode
11 Alex Lewington
12 Nick Tompkins
13 Lucio Cinti
14 Sean Maitland
15 Elliot Daly

REPLACEMENTS:
16 Theo Dan
17 Eroni Mawi
18 Marco Riccioni
19 Juan Martin Gonzalez
20 Tom Willis
21 Gareth Simpson
22 Manu Vunipola
23 Olly Hartley

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B.J. Spratt 6 hours ago
Jono Gibbes' reaction to France U20s putting 55 points on New Zealand

N.Z. Under 20'‘s concede 7 tries to France Unfortunately New Zealand Rugby has lost over 25% + of players between 12-18 over the last 3-5 years, possibly more. Poor administration and a Shocking Public Perception about the NZRFU has finally caught up with these dinosaurs. 66% of N.Z. Population lives North of Hamilton and 52% of Auckland population are Asian, who would rather play football. Rugby is dying while other Sports are growing. The rules need to change around the collision/tackle but personally I think the absolute “Arrogance and Stupidity” that the NZRFU has demonstrated over the decades, “with their jobs for the boys attitude” has led to their demise. A Professional Players Union that can somehow “Disassociate itself from the “Old men with bad breath and dandruff” that is the NZRFU, will be a huge challenge. Personally I think it’s far too late to recover and rejuvenate interest in Rugby by young players. Rugby is booming in France and that’s the difference. A booming Professional domestic League. NZRFU are “Not fit for purpose” and have no idea about commercial reality My kids generation would rather their kids don’t play Rugby. Very aware of CTE and the NZRFU arrogance and stupidity, in denying its existence. Finally, the NZRFU have managed to cover up ”Numerous serious crimes over the decades, committed by players, coaches and administrators simply because the tentacles of their “Power and Influence” have reached all sectors of New Zealand Society, including the Judiciary, Politicians, Police and Big business. Denying CTE even exists is a “no brainer for them”

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