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Saracens trounce Gloucester to reach Premiership final

Saracens trounce Gloucester to reach Premiership final
Rugby Union - Premiership Semi Final - Saracens v Gloucester Rugby - Allianz Park, London, Britain - May 25, 2019 Saracens' Jamie George in action with Gloucester's Charlie Sharples Action Images via Reuters/Matthew Childs   -   Copyright  MATTHEW CHILDS(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Saracens reached their fifth Premiership final in six years with a convincing 44-19 win over Gloucester at Allianz Park in London with centre Nick Tompkins grabbing a second-half hat-trick of tries.

The European champions will face either Exeter Chiefs or Northampton Saints, who were playing later on Saturday, in the final at Twickenham on June 1.

“Nothing brings us down,” Tompkins told BT Sport. “We found our rhythm in the later stages and didn’t let anything dictate how we felt.

“We just try get to a point, that nothing will set us back, nothing will upset our energy, good or bad. That energy is what gets us through each week.”

Gloucester took an early lead when Mark Atkinson’s inside pass allowed number eight Ben Morgan to charge over in the right corner for a simple try to put his side on the scoreboard in the third minute.

There was an instant response from Saracens two minutes later, however, as Owen Farrell’s dink allowed Sean Maitland to get the ball and score a try of his own but Farrell missed the conversion to keep the score 7-5 in favour of Gloucester.

Saracens opened up a 16-point lead by the end of the half with tries from flanker Ben Spencer — thanks to a powerful run by Maro Itoje — and Liam Williams to head down the tunnel with the score reading 23-7.

Farrell was off target several times in the game but that did not stop a relentless Saracens from extending their lead with Tompkins scoring three tries in 16 minutes after the restart, only the second hat-trick in a Premiership semi-final.

Gloucester mounted a brief comeback as Ruan Dreyer and Lewis Ludlow both went over but Saracens were resilient in defence and held on for the win.

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)

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