Match Centre: European Challenge Cup: Gloucester 15-44 Saracens

Jamie George was one of the try-scorer for Saracens
Jamie George was one of the try-scorer for Saracens

Gloucester 15-44 Saracens, Kingsholm

Saracens have progressed to the semi-final of the European Challenge Cup as they defeated Gloucester Rugby 44-15 in the quarter-final at Kingsholm on Friday.

Mark McCall's men will face the winner of Sunday’s clash between RC Toulon and London Irish.

Saracens opened their account early in the fifth minute as Owen Farrell kicked a penalty goal in front of the posts and shortly the England skipper combined with Vincent Koch breached the defence of the home side eventually allowing Aled Davies to touchdown.

Farrell also kicked the conversion as the visitors raced to a 0-10 lead.

The 15th minute saw the Cherry and Whites reduced to 14 players temporarily with Ollie Thorley sin-binned for a high-tackle on Davies and Farrell slotted a penalty goal making it 0-13.

Saracens also had a setback with Jamie George yellow carded for a high tackle and with the numerical advantage on their side, Gloucester opened their account as Jack Singleton dived from close range before Farrell kicked another penalty goal to take McCall's men to a 5-16 lead at the end of the opening half.

Gloucester were the quickest to get off the block in the second half as Adam Hastings kicked a penalty goal before Saracens extended their lead further as Maro Itoje scored from close range at the back of a scrum and Farrell landed the conversion to make it 8-23.

Gloucester had their second yellow card of the game with prop Val Rapava Ruskin sin-binned in the 49th minute and Nick Tompkins scored the third try for Saracens and the start of the final quarter saw George also going over the line. Farrell also slotted both the conversions to make it 8-37.

The final 10 minutes saw Duncan Taylor and Louis Rees-Zammit exchange tries as Saracens stormed into the semi-finals with a convincing win.

Team line up:

Gloucester: Carreras; Rees-Zammit, Harris, Atkinson, Thorley; Hastings, Chapman; Rapava-Ruskin, Singleton, Balmain; Clarke, Alemanno, Reid, Ludlow (capt); Morgan

Reserves: Socino, Elrington, Ford-Robinson, Davidson, Clement, Meehan, Twelvetrees, Seabrook

Saracens: Goode; Segun, Daly, Tompkins, Maitland; Farrell (capt), Davies; Mawi, George, Koch; Itoje, Swinson, McFarland, Earl; B Vunipola

Reserves: Pifeleti, Barrington, Clarey, Isiekwe, Christie, Van Zyl, Taylor, Lozowski