'An absolutely unbelievable feeling' - Young Gloucester Rugby squad shine in win at Saracens

'An absolutely unbelievable feeling' - Young Gloucester Rugby squad shine in win at Saracens

Gloucester Rugby’s young guns proved the foundations George Skivington has put in place over the last three years are rock solid after beating a strong Saracens side 29-20 at the StoneX Stadium on Saturday.

With a number of big-name stars returning from long-term injuries over the coming weeks and then another wave of top talent due back after their exploits at the Rugby World Cup, the Cherry and Whites’ strength in depth is looking increasingly impressive heading into the 2023/24 Gallagher Premiership season. Perhaps more importantly, director of rugby Skivington’s philosophy on how to play the game and the club's designed shapes in attack and defence are being executed no matter who fills the jersey.

Speaking after the Premiership Rugby Cup win, jubilant skipper for the day Arthur Clark, 21, explained the incentive the players have been given. He said: “We got told at the start of this competition we are going to get chances and opportunities to pull on the Gloucester shirt and the only thing the coaches have asked of us is to take that shirt in both hands and wear it with pride, and when you do get that shirt make a stamp so when it does come to bigger selections they will be scratching their heads hopefully.”

Saracen’s big-name summer signing Tom Willis opened the scoring with a short-range drive early in the contest but Gloucester quickly replied with a try from winger Jake Morris, with new arrival Max Llewellyn providing the scoring pass. England international Nick Isiekwe notched Saracen’s second with a break through the middle to give the hosts a 14-5 halftime lead but after the interval, young centre Louis Hillman-Cooper broke a tackle near halfway and then pinned his ears back and rounded full-back Tom Parton to score a stunning solo effort for the visitors.

The Cherry and Whites’ maul, which has been such a weapon over the last couple of seasons but faltered midway through the 2022/23 campaign, looks reinvigorated again and delivered a pair of tries from lineout drive, the first for Jack Clement and the second for Seb Blake.

A pair of Manu Vunipola penalties kept the contest tight but a late breakaway try from George Barton sealed a famous away win that leaves the Cherry and Whites top of Pool A with Harlequins coming to Kingsholm on Friday night.

Clark said: “All week we spoke about the challenge of coming here, knowing what Saracens are and what they have built over the years. We knew we had to respect them and we would be under the pump sometimes but the boys did absolutely amazing today and really barred up when they needed to.

“To come away with a win is an absolutely unbelievable feeling.”

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