PA Farrell, left, after his winning drop-goal.
# Match Winner
Farrell hits winning drop-goal for Saracens after missed high tackle
The England out-half’s tackle might yet attract the citing commissioner’s attention

OWEN FARRELL LANDED a long-range drop goal with the game’s final kick as Premiership leaders Saracens edged out Gloucester 19-16 at Kingsholm on Friday.

The Saracens and England fly-half had endured a miserable night with his goalkicking, missing four shots at goal from six attempts, including three from around Gloucester’s 22-metre line.

But he came up trumps when it mattered as Saracens surged 14 points clear at the Premiership summit.

Farrell, though, could face an anxious wait after a high shoulder-led tackle on a Gloucester player five minutes from time might yet attract the citing commissioner’s attention.

England kick off their Six Nations campaign against Scotland at Twickenham on February 4.

Farrell booted two penalties, while wing Max Malins and scrum-half Ivan van Zyl scored tries, yet his opposite number Santiago Carreras enjoyed an 80 percent success rate, landing three penalties and a conversion of wing Ollie Thorley’s first-half try.

The visitors breached Gloucester’s defence through an early touchdown for Malins.

But Gloucester hit back in the 15th minute as Thorley showcased blistering pace, smashing through two tackles on a 50-metre run to the line, and Carreras’ conversion made it 7-5.

A Farrell penalty nudged Saracens back in front, only for Carreras to restore Gloucester’s advantage, but the England fly-half struck again in the closing moments of the first half and secured a one-point interval advantage.

A Carreras penalty early in the second half made it 13-11 before Carreras and Farrell both missed penalties.

Saracens claimed a second try with a quarter of an hour to go after Farrell’s kick caused uncertainty in the Gloucester defence, before a slick handling move allowed Van Zyl to cross wide out.

Farrell missed the conversion and Saracens led by three points entering the closing stages.

Another Carreras penalty tied things up eight minutes from time, before Farrell kept his composure and Saracens could celebrate an 11th league win from 12 starts this season.

– © AFP 2023

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