Saracens battle through to Tyrrells Premier final with hard-fought win over Wasps

PUBLISHED: 12:48 15 April 2019 | UPDATED: 12:48 15 April 2019

Hannah Botterman of Saracens. Picture: DANNY LOO

Hannah Botterman of Saracens. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

Defending champions Saracens are through to the Tyrrells Premier 15s final after a battling 31-13 win over Wasps at Allianz Park.

Lotte Clapp of Saracens scored one of the five tries against Wasps in the Tyrrells Premier 15s semi-final. Picture: DANNY LOOLotte Clapp of Saracens scored one of the five tries against Wasps in the Tyrrells Premier 15s semi-final. Picture: DANNY LOO

The Women in Black crossed for five tries, two of them going to the former Welwyn pair Lotte Clapp and Hannah Botterman, while another alumna from the Hobbs Way-based rugby club, Zoe Harrison, kicked three conversions.

They will now face Harlequins at Franklin's Gardens, the home of Northampton Saints, on April 27.

Sarries went in to the game with a number of players missing due to injury but were still able to call on plenty of international experience.

It was needed too as the two teams started nervously with a number of errors punctuating the flow.

Wasps lost scrum-half Claudia MacDonald to an early yellow card but it would be 10 minutes later before Saracens found a chink in the visitors' defence.

That was spotted by Harrison who made the break before popping off to Jodie Rettie to score under the posts. Harrison added the conversion.

That seemed to open the floodgates with a second try arriving just five minutes later, Harpenden's Sarah McKenna feeding skipper Clapp in at the corner.

This time Harrison's conversion attempt came back off the upright.

But Wasps recovered and held the upper hand for the remainder of the first-half, two penalties from Lizzie Goulden halving the gap by the time the players left the field at half-time.

The interval reinvigorated the home side though and a powerful break by Hannah Casey eventually saw Poppy Cleall crash over after a number of forward-led drives.

Harrison's kick made it 19-6 and a fourth try followed with Botterman showing he power close to the line.

And the win was wrapped up following another weaving run from McKenna.

That got Sarries to the Wasps' 22 and after an offload to Chrissy Siczowa, the ball was shifted left for Rosie Galligan to score.

Harrison's third successful kick made it 31-6 with 18 minutes to go.

Wasps were able to bag a deserved try late on through Louise Dodd, converted by Goulden, but it was all too little, too late.

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