• Saracens power way back to top

    Saracens returned to the top of the English Premiership with a comprehensive 23-10 win over Bath on Friday night.

    The lead is unlikely to last long as the previous leaders, Northampton, play lowly Gloucester on Saturday, after which they should resume the No 1 spot. But Saracens showed the gulf in class between the top two and the rest by this effort over third-placed Bath at the Rec.

    Francois Louw's Bath team were always on the back foot until Namibian flanker Jacques Burger was sent to the sin bin for a high tackle in the 65th minute. Saracens then chose not to bolster their scrum, which led to a penalty try as Bath drove in constantly, forcing one penalty too many.

    It was too little too late. Saracens had established a sufficent cushion with tries by Chris Wyles and David Strettle and 13 points from the boot of Alex Goode, and the Bok-style defence held out.

    After 16 rounds, the London team have all but sealed their place in the play-off places.

    Saturday fixtures:

    Exeter vs London Irish
    Harlequins vs Worcester
    London Wasps vs Sale
    Northampton vs Gloucester


    Newcastle vs Leicester

    Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images