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Saracens

  • Hodgson, Stevens, Wyles, Ashton (2),
    Penalty goals: Farrell (3),
    Conversions: Farrell (3),
40 - 7

Edinburgh

  • Tonks ,
    Conversions: Laidlaw,

Heineken Cup match preview: Saracens set for final match at Vicarage Road

Last updated: 20th January 2013  

Netani Talei of Edinburgh makes a break v Ulster

Netani Talei: back in Edinburgh's pack for Sunday's trip to Vicarage Road

Charlie Hodgson kicking one of seven

Charlie Hodgson: returns at fly-half, meaning Owen Farrell switches into the centres

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Saracens will be looking to clinch top spot in Pool 1 when they welcome Edinburgh to Vicarage Road on Sunday.

The Aviva Premiership club currently sit at the summit of the group on 18 points, three above nearest rivals Munster, following a superb away win over Racing Metro last time out.

Director of rugby Mark McCall has made three changes to the line-up that triumphed on French soil, including recalling prop Mako Vunipola and second-row George Kruis to the pack.

The other alteration comes at fly-half with the experienced Charlie Hodgson taking over at No.10 from Owen Farrell, who switches to inside centre in place of Joel Tomkins.

Mouritz Botha is named amongst the replacements, meaning he will have to hope to make his 100th appearance for the club from the bench.

The match will be Sarries' last at Vicarage Road ahead of a move to their new home at Allianz Park.

Edinburgh, meanwhile, will be looking to make sure they at least don't finish a highly-disappointing European campaign without a point to their name.

They went down 26-17 to Munster at Murrayfield last weekend but wing Dougie Fife did grab a brace of tries, their first in this season's competition.

The only change for the visitors sees Netani Talei start at number eight. David Denton drops down to the bench. There is also a spot amongst the list of replacements for Lee Jones, who has recovered from a rib injury.

Saracens: 15 Chris Wyles, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Owen Farrell, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 David Strettle, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Ernst Joubert, 7 Will Fraser, 6 Kelly Brown, 5 George Kruis, 4 Steve Borthwick (capt), 3 Matt Stevens, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 Mako Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 John Smit, 17 Rhys Gill, 18 Petrus du Plessis, 19 Mouritz Botha, 20 Nick Fenton-Wells, 21 Neil de Kock, 22 Joel Tomkins, 23 Duncan Taylor.

Edinburgh: 15 Greig Tonks, 14 Dougie Fife, 13 Ben Cairns, 12 Matt Scott, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Greig Laidlaw, 9 Richie Rees, 8 Netani Talei, 7 Dimitri Basilaia, 6 Stuart McInally, 5 Sean Cox, 4 Grant Gilchrist, 3 Willem Nel, 2 Steven Lawrie, 1 Allan Jacobsen.
Replacements: 16 Andy Titterrell, 17 Robin Hislop, 18 Geoff Cross, 19 David Denton, 20 Roddy Grant, 21 Piers Francis, 22 Ben Atiga, 23 Lee Jones.

What they said...

Edinburgh head coach Michael Bradley

"The boys showed real grit and determination against Munster and, while we earned the rewards late in the match, they showed elements of the controlled, territorial performance that we're looking to deliver in these big games.

"Saracens have shown that they are one of the top team teams in Europe at controlling matches and keeping cool under pressure, so this will be a fantastic test for us as we seek to end this season's campaign with a win."

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