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Sunday, 8 September, 2002, 17:00 GMT 18:00 UK
Grewcock off as Bath sink
Saracens captain Kyran Bracken
Bracken was able to return for the second half
Saracens 28-3 Bath

England international and Bath captain Danny Grewcock could face three months on the sidelines following a violent clash with Saracens skipper Kyran Bracken.

The lock, who once shared a flat with his England team-mate, appeared to kick Bracken in the face during the Bath's 28-3 defeat at Vicarage Road on Sunday.

The fracas came just before the break and despite Saracens' Craig Yandell's attempts to restrain Grewcock, he still did enough damage to force Bracken off the field nursing a bloodied jaw.

The incident happened directly in front of the touch judge, and referee Steve Leyshon had no hesitation in sending off the British Lion.

  Match facts
Saracens 28
Tries: Russell, Castaignede, Ross
Cons: Goode (2)
Pens: Goode (3)
Bath 3
Pen: Barkley

Grewcock will now have to face an RFU disciplinary panel on a charge that can carry an 84-day ban.

If found guilty, not only will it be a bitter blow for Bath but he will also be excluded from the autumn internationals against New Zealand, South Africa and Australia.

Scrum-half Bracken managed to return to the field at the start of the second half sporting a large plaster, but by then his side had done enough to secure victory.

Bath's Olly Barkley scored the first points of the game with a fourth-minute penalty.

Thomas Castaignede is tackled by Bath's Mike Tindall
Castaignede scored Saracens' second try
But that proved to be the visitors' only score and Saracens took over as back-rower Ben Russell put them ahead with a 14th-minute try.

Andy Goode converted and then added two penalties before full-back Thomas Castaignede rounded off a spell of home pressure with a second try just before the break.

Goode punished Grewcock's offence with a penalty to give Saracens a 21-3 lead at half-time.

The tempo of the game calmed after the interval, although tempers did not.

Twice more Leyshon consulted his touch judges because of flashpoints between the teams.

But Saracens substitute Joe Ross rounded off the afternoon with a third try after 77 minutes, converted by Nicky Little.


Saracens: Castaignede; Johnson, Shanklin, Sorrell, O'Mahony; Goode, Bracken; Flatman, Cairns, Marsters, Yandell, Hooper, Chesney, Hill, B Russell.
Replacements: Ross, Parkes, Benazzi, Roche, Sparg, Little, Winnan.

Bath: Barkley; Danielli, Catt, Tindall, Voyce; Malone, Cooper; Barnes, Humphries, Galasso, Beattie, Grewcock, G Thomas, Vander, N Thomas.
Replacements: Blake, Mears, Emms, Crockett, Thirlby, Mallett, Lyle.

Referee: Steve Leyshon (RFU)

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Nigel Starmer-Smith
"Bath are in some trouble"
Bath boss Jack Rowell
"We made too many mistakes"
Saracens skipper Kyran Bracken
"It would have been nice to get a bonus point"

Wk 2 match reports

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