Marcelo Bosch scored a long range, late penalty for Saracens, as they secured a place in the last four of the European Champions Cup on Sunday; the Sarries are now the only English club left in the European tournament. However, their flanker Jacques Burger has been subsequently accused for attacking a Racing Metro scrum-half Maxime Machenaud midway through the match, and will face a disciplinary hearing later today.
Saracens led at half-time by 6-5, after two Charlie Hogdson penalties either side of a Machenaud unconverted try, which went over in the 27th minute of the match.
Alex Goode scored a third penalty kick for Saracens in the 48th minute, but when Machenaud sent his two second-half penalties over, the hosts looked in control and were well positioned to reach their first semi-final in top-level European tournament at 11-9. However, it was not to be for the Parisians, as they then masterminded their own downfall; the hosts were punished for time-wasting tactics on their own 10-metre line, in the last minutes of the match. With 10 seconds remaining, the Welsh referee Nigel Owens penalised “Les Racingmen” and awarded a kick to the visitors.
The Sarries then struggled with a choice of a goalkicker; their first-pick Hodgson was not on the field to take the penalty, having injured his leg earlier, and Alex Goode lacked the required range, so up stepped Bosch to edge Saracens on point ahead for the victory.
The Argentinian match winner, whose wife is about to give birth to twins, sent the Sarries into the semi-finals to face another difficult French opponent - Clermont Auvergne in St. Etienne on 18 April, as the French side made light work of Aviva Premiership leaders Northampton by winning 37-5 in their quarter-final. Other semi-finalists are Toulon and Leinster, who will play on 19 April.
But it still remains to be seen what will happen with the Sarries’ flanker Jacques Burger; if found guilty for the attack, he could face a minimum two – week ban, which could go to anything from eight weeks to 52 weeks maximum. #Rugby