Saracens’ Mark McCall delighted with squad choice ahead of Leinster clash

Saracens check out the St James' Park pitch prior to the Heineken Cup final against Leinster.

Saracens check out the St James' Park pitch prior to the Heineken Cup final against Leinster. - Credit: Archant

Mark McCall has said being able to name the side he has for Saracens’ Heineken Cup final against Leinster is nothing short of delight.

The director of rugby has virtually a full-strength side to choose from and has gone with one littered with talent and experience.

Of the 23-man squad, 16 have tasted Champions Cup success and two are European player of the year nominees.

Leinster too can boast an impressive line-up but the Sarries boss is feeling confident ahead of tomorrow's clash at St James' Park.

He said: "You want to have your best players available to you for this type of game.

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"Both teams are really strong for tomorrow but if you told me at the start of the season that this was the team we would have available to us in the European Cup final, I'd have been very happy with that.

"There are always difficult selection decisions, especially for games like this.

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"We've got some players who are playing really well who are not in the 23-man squad."

The one injury problem is to Michael Rhodes, scorer of the first try in Saracens' win over Munster in the semi-final.

He misses out with his place taken by the giant Will Skelton, all of which will mean a place in the back row for Maro Itoje.

"[Rhodes] struggled in the last 10 days so we gave him until Thursday but he hasn't recovered unfortunately," said McCall.

"But we've been preparing all week for him not to be ready.

"One of the reasons we've had him Will on the bench in recent games has been his impact but he's been playing some really good rugby when he has started as well and we'll get 55 to 60 minutes out of him."

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