Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall reflects on defeat to Northampton
Mark McCall reflected on the "massive disappointment" of Saracens failing to reach the Aviva Premiership final.
Last Updated: 13/05/13 5:09am
Sarries, who finished the regular season on top of the Premiership table and were favourites for the title, were stunned 27-13 by Northampton at Allianz Park.
Northampton, who had finished 12 points behind the table-toppers, raced into a 17-0 half-time lead with tries from Brian Mujati and Jamie Elliott.
Owen Farrell kicked two penalties to keep alive any faint hopes of a Saracens comeback - but they were quashed when GJ Van Velze scored Northampton's third try just before the hour.
Saracens did engineer a consolation try from Duncan Taylor when Elliot was in the sin-bin but it was the Saints who marched on to Twickenham.
McCall paid tribute to Northampton's performance but admitted his side had put in a poor display, particularly in the first half.
He said: "It is a massive disappointment.
"We gave ourselves a mountain to climb at half-time. Northampton put us under a lot of pressure especially in that first half and we made a lot mistakes.
"Northampton were very, very good today, extremely physical and their defence was outstanding.
"We showed in patches in the second half what we were capable of and we gave it a real go but the first half was very un-Saracens like."