Sarries will raise their own game to meet the challenges of improved rivals says Lotte

PUBLISHED: 06:56 19 September 2019

Lotte Clapp in action for Saracens during the Tyrrells Premier 15s game against Firwood Waterloo. Picture: DANNY LOO

Lotte Clapp in action for Saracens during the Tyrrells Premier 15s game against Firwood Waterloo. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

There will be no complacency at all as Saracens get ready for a tilt at a third Tyrrells Premier 15s according to Lotte Clapp.

The north London side have won the first two championships and will go into this season, which starts on September 21 with an away trip to Bristol Bears, as firm favourites once more.

But with the standards of each of their rivals increasing, the Welwyn Garden City winger knows that the Women in Black will have to improve their own game.

"We can't be complacent at all," she said. "We know there are other teams gunning for us and it would be easy to say we've won it twice so we know how it goes.

"But that's not the case.

"It's a new season and a new start so we've got to go again.

"All the teams have a lot of new signings so it's going to be totally different."

Saracens' levels will be boosted by one off-the-field acquisition, in the shape of record England cap holder Rocky Clark who joins the Allianz Park side as a coach.

And Clapp believes her influence, as well as the large group from the club who hold a full-time contact with the Red Roses, will only bring out the best in the champions.

She said: "Its unreal the huge progress that the England girls have made since they've been full-time, you can see the skill levels just going up and up.

"It is really fast-tracking the women's game which is so exciting.

"But it's also great that it's coming into club rugby as well. You're not just seeing it in international games, when they come back to their clubs they are bringing the tactics, the skill level and you could see in that final against Harlequins last year.

"That was arguably the best club game played."

Clapp has her own personal goals too for the season, which will see the 24-year-old continue as club captain, something she has thoroughly revelled in even if it came out of the blue.

"It was something I came into over the last two years," she admitted. "When I first did it I was a little bit unsure of how the role worked and whether I was suited to it but actually I've just enjoyed it.

"Sometimes actions speak louder than words. I might not be the biggest voice on the pitch but we have so many players who will stand up and say the right things at the right time. It doesn't always need to be me which is nice.

"And it's important that I'm here through pre-season to welcome all the new players and they feel like part of Saracens.

"I'm happy to build the Saracens culture."

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