Saracens Women earn rewards at Richmond
- Credit: Archant
Saracens Women made it 12 wins from 12 with a 42-7 success at Richmond.
With Storm Dennis making its presence known, it was not a game for fast, flowing rugby and Richmond scored first through Ro Burnfield.
Tries from Jodie Rettie and Rocky Clark, converted by Lisa Martin, put Saracens 14-7 up at half-time and the visitors tightened things up in the second half with Alex Ellis, Hannah Botterman, Vicky Fleetwood and Poppy Cleall tries converted by Martin to ensure maximum points.
The win moved them to the top of the Tyrrells Premier 15s table on 59 points, two ahead of Harlequins Women.
The hosts made the perfect start as they scored within the opening minutes when a knock-on at kick-off gave Richmond ideal field position and they capitalised after a number of strong carries as Burnfield went over.
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A successful conversion gave Richmond a 7-0 lead after just four minutes but Saracens got their first try on 20 minutes through Scotland international Rettie.
The Sarries scrum, effective throughout, proved too strong for Richmond and Rettie showed impressive control at the back to get the ball over the line and dot down.
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The rest of the half proved to be a stop-start affair, but Saracens took the lead with a few minutes remaining.
Botterman and May Campbell made the initial burst and Clark applied the finishing touch as she ran a short line off Martin to go over next to the posts.
The visitors had probably been guilty of trying to play too much rugby in that first half, but rectified that in the second period.
Another dominant scrum gave Sarries their third try with Ellis getting the final touch and Botterman, who made yards on every carry, ensured Saracens got their bonus point as she powered through from 20 metres.
It was arguably the try of the game as the visitors put together a multi-phase attack and the prop took advantage of a retreating defence to finish well.
Two similar tries followed in the final quarter as England duo Fleetwood and Cleall came off the bench and made their presence felt.
The final 20 minutes also saw the welcome return of prop Bryony Cleall, making her first appearance in almost a year and producing a number of strong carries.