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Aviva Premiership final: Saracens take on Northampton Saints at Twickenham
- Friday is D-Day for Hartley
- Borthwick exit upsets Brits
- Sarries fuming at TMO
- McCall tribute to Borthwick
Saracens are looking to bounce back from their Heineken Cup heartache when they take on Northampton Saints in Saturday's Aviva Premiership final at Twickenham.
Mark McCall's side slipped to a 23-6 defeat to champions Toulon as they went for a first-ever European Cup last weekend.
In contrast, opponents Northampton go into the game on a high, beating Bath 30-16 in last Friday's Amlin Challenge Cup final.
But Saracens will be boosted by the fact they finished top of the regular table, with Northampton second.
In games between the sides, the Saints won 41-20 in the clash at Franklin's Gardens back in October, while Saracens narrowly reversed the form with a 28-24 home victory last month.
In their semi-finals earlier this month, Saracens comfortably beat Harlequins 31-17 while Saints came back to beat Leicester Tigers 21-20.
The showpiece final is Saracens captain Steve Borthwick's final game as a professional rugby player before taking up a coaching position in Japan next season.
He wants to go out on a high, telling the club's official website: "There has been a tremendous amount of hard work from lots of people in this organisation throughout this season and the years before to get to this point in time and to get to this final.
"I think that we are going to go out on Saturday and play as hard as we possibly can. I think that the one thing that I'm sure of this group is it won't be for the want of trying.
"We're playing against a very good team in Northampton, like we did last Saturday when we played Toulon, so I can't tell you what the result will be, but we are going to give it our very best shot."
But Saints wing George North, who scored in the semi-final comeback against Leicester, is hungry for more silverware after beating Bath.
He told SaintsTV: "Winning silverware was one of the main reasons I came to the club. Initially I thought it may take a bit of time to build that ethos but it has been awesome so far this season.
"We've really pushed on and to get a cup under our belts already has given us a lot of confidence.
"We know Saracens are a good side though and it's hard to read too much into their game last weekend. Toulon are one of the best squads in world rugby, at a club or international level, and really turned it on.
"Saracens have been the form side in the Premiership all season so for us, we've really got to turn the taps up and go in hard on Saturday."
Saracens will be without England prop Mako Vunipola, who has a knee injury, so Richard Barrington deputises.
Skipper Borthwick has overcome a troublesome pectoral muscle to play and is partnered in the second-row by Mouritz Botha.
A rotational switch at scrum-half sees Neil de Kock in for Richard Wigglesworth.
For Northampton, there are two changes from the side which beat Bath.
Scrum-half Kahn Fotuali'I starts instead of Lee Dickson, while prop Salesi Ma'afu returns from suspension and replaces Tom Mercey.
England hooker Dylan Hartley is on the bench after being sidelined for two months due to a shoulder injury.
Saracens: 15 Goode, 14 Ashton, 13 Bosch, 12 Barritt, 11 Strettle; 10 Farrell, 9 de Kock, 1 Barrington, 2 Brits, 3 Stevens, 4 Borthwick (c), 5 Botha, 6 Brown, 7 Burger, 8 Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 George, 17 Gill, 18 Johnston, 19 Hargreaves, 20 Wray, 21 Wigglesworth, 22 Hodgson, 23 Wyles.
Northampton: 15 Foden, 14 K Pisi, 13 G Pisi, 12 Burrell, 11 North, 10 Myler, 9 Fotuali'i, 1 Corbisiero, 2 Haywood, 3 Ma'afu, 4 Manoa, 5 Lawes, 6 Clark, 7 Wood (c), 8 Dickinson.
Replacements: 16 Hartley, 17 Waller, 18 Mercy, 19 Day, 20 Dowson, 21 Dickson, 22 Wilson, 23 Stephenson.
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|Friday 14th November|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Harlequins|
|19:45||Northampton vs Exeter|
|Saturday 15th November|
|14:00||Sale vs London Irish|
|17:00||Bath vs Newcastle|
|Sunday 16th November|
|13:00||Leicester vs Saracens|
|15:15||Wasps vs London Welsh|
|Friday 21st November|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Sale|
|20:00||Newcastle vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 22nd November|
|15:00||London Irish vs Bath|
|15:00||Exeter vs Wasps|
|Sunday 23rd November|
|13:00||Saracens vs Northampton|
|15:15||London Welsh vs Leicester|
|Friday 28th November|
|19:45||Bath vs Harlequins|
|Saturday 29th November|
|15:00||Leicester vs Wasps|
|16:30||Exeter vs Saracens|
|Sunday 30th November|
|13:00||London Irish vs Gloucester|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Northampton|
|15:15||Newcastle vs Sale|
|Saturday 20th December|
|14:00||Sale vs Exeter|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Bath|
|15:00||Northampton vs Leicester|
|15:00||Saracens vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Newcastle|
|Sunday 21st December|
|14:00||Wasps vs London Irish|
|Friday 26th December|
|15:00||London Irish vs London Welsh|
|Sunday 12th October|
|Wasps 29 - 22 Bath|
|Saturday 11th October|
|Northampton 43 - 10 Sale Sharks|
|Saracens 28 - 21 Gloucester|
|Exeter 44 - 24 London Irish|
|London Welsh 3 - 23 Newcastle|
|Friday 10th October|
|Leicester 22 - 16 Harlequins|
|Sunday 5th October|
|Newcastle 29 - 24 Exeter|
|Sale 25 - 14 Wasps|
|Saturday 4th October|
|Gloucester 33 - 16 Leicester|
|Harlequins 52 - 0 London Welsh|
|London Irish 12 - 19 Northampton|
|Friday 3rd October|
|Bath 21 - 11 Saracens|
|Sunday 28th September|
|Wasps 35 - 18 Newcastle|
|Exeter 36 - 13 Harlequins|
|Saturday 27th September|
|Northampton 31 - 24 Bath|
|Leicester 19 - 22 London Irish|
|Saracens 40 - 19 Sale Sharks|
|Friday 26th September|
|London Welsh 10 - 46 Gloucester|
|Sunday 21st September|
|Newcastle 10 - 35 Northampton|
|Saturday 20th September|
|Bath 45 - 0 Leicester|
|Harlequins 26 - 23 Wasps|
|London Irish 32 - 36 Saracens|
|Sale 46 - 8 London Welsh|
|Friday 19th September|
|Gloucester 22 - 25 Exeter|
|Sunday 14th September|
|Newcastle 18 - 20 London Irish|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com