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Good afternoon and welcome to our live text commentary of this Champions Cup pool-stage tie between title-holders Saracens and Munster, a perennial powerhouse in this competition.

We are in round four, which means this is the second leg of the December, home-and-away double-header that marks the halfway stage of the group fixture schedule.

In soaking Limerick last Saturday, Munster dogged out a 10-3 victory against a young visiting team. Peter O’Mahony’s first-half try proved decisive. The second period was characterised by torrential rain, handling errors and plenty of kicks.

Munster back-rower Arno Botha was also sent off for driving his forearm into the throat of Saracens centre Nick Tompkins. Mark McCall’s visitors had a late chance to snatch a draw, but were probably satisfied with a losing bonus point.

That sets up this afternoon’s encounter at Allianz Park, and Saracens are pretty close to full strength. Here are the teams.


15. Max Malins, 14. Sean Maitland, 13. Alex Lozowski, 12. Nick Tompkins, 11. Elliot Daly, 10. Owen Farrell (c), 9. Richard Wigglesworth, 1. Mako Vunipola, 2. Jamie George, 3. Vincent Koch, 4. Joel Kpoku, 5. George Kruis, 6. Nick Isiekwe, 7. Ben Earl, 8. Billy Vunipola.

Replacements: 16. Tom Woolstencroft, 17. Richard Barrington, 18. Josh Ibuanokpe, 19. Calum Clark, 20. Jackson Wray, 21. Brad Barritt, 22. Manu Vunipola, 23. Duncan Taylor


15. Mike Haley, 14. Andrew Conway, 13. Chris Farrell, 12. Rory Scannell, 11. Keith Earls, 10. JJ Hanrahan, 9. Conor Murray, 1. James Cronin, 2. Niall Scannell, 3. John Ryan, 4. Jean Kleyn, 5. Billy Holland, 6. Tadhg Beirne, 7. Peter O’Mahony (c), 8. CJ Stander.

Replacements: 16. Kevin O’Byrne, 17. Liam O’Connor, 18. Stephen Archer, 19. Fineen Wycherley, 20. Jack O’Donoghue, 21. Nick McCarthy, 22. Dan Goggin, 23. Tommy O’Donnell