x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Saracens fight their way back to top against Leeds

A revamped Leeds Carnegie side put up a solid show against the unbeaten Saracens before going down 21-15.

A revamped Leeds Carnegie side put up a solid show against the unbeaten Saracens before going down 21-15. With this victory, the Sarries regained the top spot on the table after London Irish had taken their place following Saturday's win over reigning champions Leicester. Having made 11 changes, the bottom placed side ran the England captain Steve Borthwick's team close at Vicarage Road.

Before the match, theSaracens' director of rugby Brendan Venter had insisted that they would not under-estimate their opponents and rightly pointed out that Leeds were a good side and had been close in almost all their previous games despite their losses. Trailing 11-6, Ceiron Thomas added two more penalties in Carnegie's tally after the break as they went ahead for the first time despite Kameli Ratuvou's try and a conversion and penalty from Glen Jackson. Ratuvou then scored a second try and Jackson kicked a further penalty for Saracens.

A penalty from substitute Dereick Hougaard took the Sarries to safety despite a drop goal by Thomas in the last minute of the game. * With agencies