Heavy Defeat For Glasgow Against Saracens

Saracens 37, Glasgow 6Glasgow have a huge mountain to climb if they are to pull through the Parker Pen Challenge Cup second round. The hurdle is not so much a Scottish ben, more an alpine peak.This evening Glasgow left Vicarage Road trailing a 31-point deficit from the first leg against Saracens in the first leg. That is a huge figure to have to overturn in the return match at Hughenden on Friday.Glasgow's only points were from two first-half penalty goals by Dan Parks. For the opposition Thomas Castaignede scored 22, including two tries. Robbie Russell, the Scotland reserve hooker, had the first of Saracens" two second-half tries.Saracens led 25-6 at the interval, and the bulk of that home tally was while Cammy Mather was in the sin-bin late in the first half. In that time Glasgow conceded 15 points whereas they could make nothing of Simon Raiwalui's yellow card in the second half.Indeed, Glasgow spent much of the second half in Saracens" territory, though with no return. Russell and his namesake, Ben, were the only second-half scorers.It might have been so much different if Glasgow had exploited the general drift of a swirling wind in the first half. Yet even against the weather, with a heavy shower adding to both sides" problems in the first quarter, Glasgow had early chances.Mishandling cost them two openings, but after an early penalty miss by the home stand-off Gareth Maclure opened the way for a potential Glasgow try, the wing hacking and chasing through into the home 22. Another boot to the ball was too risky close to the goal-line, and he rightly opted to secure the ball on the ground to feed Mother's support. Maclure was prevented from regaining his feet, but instead of a close-range penalty for Glasgow a scrum was ordered for Saracens.Soon afterwards, following a Ben Johnston break, a penalty lineout allowed Castaignede the opportunity to break past Dan Parks for a try. The home stand-off also converted.After a penalty exchanged by the two stand-offs, Parks from 30 metres, the Frenchman from 10 metres longer, the Glasgow outside half tried to prise open space with a kick to the left. But Sean Lamont gathered ball and tackle together.It was then that Mather was sin-binned, reputedly for a high tackle. Immediately, Castaignede kicked a goal from a collapsed-maul penalty. Then Kyran Bracken slipped in for a blind-side try after a series of attempted pushovers. Castaignede converted, and in added time he was awarded a try so close to the dead-ball advertising that he was almost converted into a reluctant sandwich-board man.With the last kick of the first half Parks struck his second penalty goal. However, so far behind, with their set-piece game under severe pressure, Glasgow could still have had aspiration of exploiting the wind to haul Saracens" 19-point lead back to manageable proportions. But they needed an early score in the second half. Instead, Robbie Russell galloped away from just inside his own half. Castaignede added the conversion for 32-6.Glasgow went on to have the bulk of the second-half pressure. But they made nothing of it, even while Simon Raiwalui was in the sin-bin. During those 10 minutes Glasgow turned on fierce pressure in the right corner, but they could not translate it into points.So it was all the more frustrating that just before the end a close-range penalty allowed Ben Russell to nip in for Saracens' fifth try. By then, Castaignede had been replaced by Nicky Little, who missed the conversion.Saracens - Richard Haughton; Denis Cech, Paul Bailey, Ben Johnston, Darragh O"Mahony; Thomas Castaignede, Kyran Bracken; Steven Sparks, Raphael Ibanez, Cobus Visagie, Simon Raiwalui (captain), Alex Codling, Ben Skirving, Taine Randell, Ben Russell. Substitutes - Robbie Russell for Ibanez (half-time), Morgan Williams for Bracken (53), Ryan Peacey for Skirving (55), Ben Broster for Visagie (69), Nicky Little for Castaignede (70), Daniel Legge for Codling (78).Tries, Castaignede (2), Bracken, Robbie Russell, Ben Russell; conversions, Castaignede (3); penalty goals, Castaignede (2).Glasgow - Stuart Moffat; Gareth Maclure, Graeme Morrison, Andrew Henderson, Sean Lamont; Dan Parks, Graeme Beveridge; Euan Murray, Gordon Bulloch, Matt Proudfoot, Andrew Hall, Nathan Ross, Cameron Mather (captain), Jon Petrie, Donnie Macfadyen. Substitutes - Andrew Kelly for Proudfoot (32), Rory Kerr for Moffat (57), Rory McKay for Hall (68).Penalty goals, Parks (2).Referee - Christophe Berdos (France).Attendance - 3653.Saracens 37, Glasgow 6Glasgow have a huge mountain to climb if they are to pull through the Parker Pen Challenge Cup second round. The hurdle is not so much a Scottish ben, more an alpine peak.This evening Glasgow left Vicarage Road trailing a 31-point deficit from the first leg against Saracens in the first leg. That is a huge figure to have to overturn in the return match at Hughenden on Friday.Glasgow's only points were from two first-half penalty goals by Dan Parks. For the opposition Thomas Castaignede scored 22, including two tries. Robbie Russell, the Scotland reserve hooker, had the first of Saracens" two second-half tries.Saracens led 25-6 at the interval, and the bulk of that home tally was while Cammy Mather was in the sin-bin late in the first half. In that time Glasgow conceded 15 points whereas they could make nothing of Simon Raiwalui's yellow card in the second half.Indeed, Glasgow spent much of the second half in Saracens" territory, though with no return. Russell and his namesake, Ben, were the only second-half scorers.It might have been so much different if Glasgow had exploited the general drift of a swirling wind in the first half. Yet even against the weather, with a heavy shower adding to both sides" problems in the first quarter, Glasgow had early chances.Mishandling cost them two openings, but after an early penalty miss by the home stand-off Gareth Maclure opened the way for a potential Glasgow try, the wing hacking and chasing through into the home 22. Another boot to the ball was too risky close to the goal-line, and he rightly opted to secure the ball on the ground to feed Mother's support. Maclure was prevented from regaining his feet, but instead of a close-range penalty for Glasgow a scrum was ordered for Saracens.Soon afterwards, following a Ben Johnston break, a penalty lineout allowed Castaignede the opportunity to break past Dan Parks for a try. The home stand-off also converted.After a penalty exchanged by the two stand-offs, Parks from 30 metres, the Frenchman from 10 metres longer, the Glasgow outside half tried to prise open space with a kick to the left. But Sean Lamont gathered ball and tackle together.It was then that Mather was sin-binned, reputedly for a high tackle. Immediately, Castaignede kicked a goal from a collapsed-maul penalty. Then Kyran Bracken slipped in for a blind-side try after a series of attempted pushovers. Castaignede converted, and in added time he was awarded a try so close to the dead-ball advertising that he was almost converted into a reluctant sandwich-board man.With the last kick of the first half Parks struck his second penalty goal. However, so far behind, with their set-piece game under severe pressure, Glasgow could still have had aspiration of exploiting the wind to haul Saracens" 19-point lead back to manageable proportions. But they needed an early score in the second half. Instead, Robbie Russell galloped away from just inside his own half. Castaignede added the conversion for 32-6.Glasgow went on to have the bulk of the second-half pressure. But they made nothing of it, even while Simon Raiwalui was in the sin-bin. During those 10 minutes Glasgow turned on fierce pressure in the right corner, but they could not translate it into points.So it was all the more frustrating that just before the end a close-range penalty allowed Ben Russell to nip in for Saracens' fifth try. By then, Castaignede had been replaced by Nicky Little, who missed the conversion.Saracens - Richard Haughton; Denis Cech, Paul Bailey, Ben Johnston, Darragh O"Mahony; Thomas Castaignede, Kyran Bracken; Steven Sparks, Raphael Ibanez, Cobus Visagie, Simon Raiwalui (captain), Alex Codling, Ben Skirving, Taine Randell, Ben Russell. Substitutes - Robbie Russell for Ibanez (half-time), Morgan Williams for Bracken (53), Ryan Peacey for Skirving (55), Ben Broster for Visagie (69), Nicky Little for Castaignede (70), Daniel Legge for Codling (78).Tries, Castaignede (2), Bracken, Robbie Russell, Ben Russell; conversions, Castaignede (3); penalty goals, Castaignede (2).Glasgow - Stuart Moffat; Gareth Maclure, Graeme Morrison, Andrew Henderson, Sean Lamont; Dan Parks, Graeme Beveridge; Euan Murray, Gordon Bulloch, Matt Proudfoot, Andrew Hall, Nathan Ross, Cameron Mather (captain), Jon Petrie, Donnie Macfadyen. Substitutes - Andrew Kelly for Proudfoot (32), Rory Kerr for Moffat (57), Rory McKay for Hall (68).Penalty goals, Parks (2).Referee - Christophe Berdos (France).Attendance - 3653.