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Saracens 'opted out of the fight' in Bordeaux pummelling- Jamie George

By PA
Bordeaux' French fly half Mateo Garcia reacts after his try during the European Rugby Champions Cup round of 16 rugby union match between Bordeaux-Begles (FRA) and Saracens (ENG) at stade Chaban-Delmas in Bordeaux on April 6, 2024. (Photo by ROMAIN PERROCHEAU / AFP) (Photo by ROMAIN PERROCHEAU/AFP via Getty Images)

Saracens captain Jamie George says they are determined to bounce back in the Gallagher Premiership after suffering an end-of-an-era defeat in Europe.

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The 45-12 loss in Bordeaux means some of the key players in three European Cup triumphs are unlikely to appear again for the club in Europe – the scale of the defeat also pointing towards a rebuilding job.

Bordeaux will face English Premiership opposition again next week in the quarter-finals, with Harlequins the visitors to the south west of France.

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It will be back to the Premiership for Saracens, currently in third place, while the next time they appear in Europe will be without the likes of Owen Farrell and Billy Vunipola, with the future of some other senior players also uncertain.

“We have a lot of club legends leaving at the end of the season and this is not how we wanted this European journey to end for those guys, for all of us, but we have got to go very hard at the Premiership competition,” said George after the game.

Match Summary

1
Penalty Goals
0
6
Tries
2
6
Conversions
1
0
Drop Goals
0
116
Carries
89
9
Line Breaks
2
14
Turnovers Lost
17
3
Turnovers Won
5

“It really is a tough one to swallow. I’m finding it really hard to sum it up really, because we showed a lot of fight and then we probably opted out of the fight a little bit in the second half.

“When you hand over possession like that to a team like Bordeaux, you are always going to struggle and they showed their class.

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“We wish them all the best for the rest of the tournament, a tough pill for us to swallow but we look forward to a big push in the domestic competition.

“We made too many mistakes, they did very well at the breakdown to turn us over, handling errors, a bit loose at times in terms of our attack, and when you give the ball away loosely to a team like Bordeaux they are always going to capitalise.

“All our eggs are in the basket of the domestic competition now, so we are going to give our everything to that.

“We know the history we have got in that, we are as eager as ever to get a trophy at the end of the year, but we know how hard that is going to be given the competition that is there.

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“We have got to learn from this to be at our best to do what we want to do come the end of the season.”

Meanwhile, Bordeaux prop Ben Tameifuna is looking forward to facing Harlequins in front of a home crowd next weekend.

“It will be even more crazy,” he said.

“You can tell by tonight the crowd has been awesome, they have been behind us all season, so good thanks to them and we will be good to go next week.”

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