Barritt spurred on by loss

Saracens centre determined to make amends for title agony

By Tony Curtis - Twitter: @SkySportsTC.   Last Updated: 03/05/11 2:42pm

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Barritt (centre): Focused on winning the title

Barritt (centre): Focused on winning the title

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Centre Brad Barritt insists Saracens are determined to make amends for last season's Premiership heartbreak against Leicester.

A late Glen Jackson penalty looked to have secured the Premiership title for Sarries at Twickenham, only for the Tigers to snatch the victory when Dan Hipkiss scored a try almost immediately from the restart.

England Saxons back Barritt was one of the Saracens players left devastated by that 33-27 loss - but 12 months on, the club are closing in on setting the record straight.

And having already secured their place in this season's play-offs with two games to go, the squad are fully focused on avenging that defeat.

"That is definitely a motivation for us," Barritt told skysports.com.

"It was hugely disappointing for the entire club to be so close yet so far.

Momentum

"We want to go out and be the Premiership champions. We have put in a lot of hard work in but we are aware there is still some more to go."

Despite booking their place in the top-four with a 33-12 win over Exeter Chiefs, there will be no let-up from Saracens in the final two games of the regular season.

The Vicarage Road side will entertain play-off chasing Gloucester on Saturday, before taking on Harlequins on May 7 at the Stoop.

And with a home semi-final still up for grabs, Barritt claims there is still plenty for the side to play for - particularly as Gloucester have their own designs on finishing in the top-two.

"We want to go out and be the Premiership champions. We have put in a lot of hard work in but we are aware there is still some more to go."
Brad Barritt Quotes of the week

"We are edging towards the business end of the season and we want to keep the momentum going," said the Natal-born 24-year-old.

"We have aspirations of a home semi-final and that means beating Gloucester. There will be no taking the foot of the gas.

Culture

"Gloucester are a very well balanced side. They have a good set-piece, they attack well and having seen their game against Northampton they seem strong defensively.

"But we have done a lot of work analysing them, have trained well and will be ready."

Saracens certainly have the momentum after winning eight games on the bounce, with the squad showing no ill-effects from Brendan Venter's decision to step down as director of rugby at the end of 2010.

And Barritt has been full of praise of the way Venter's replacement Mark McCall and coach Andy Farrell have slotted in.

"Brendan was huge for the club and the culture that he brought in," said Barritt.

"But Mark McCall and Andy Farrell have both stepped up and things have continued just as smoothly. That is the way things are at Saracens.

"Brendan still has an input as technical director, though, and tells us where we have gone wrong and points us in the right direction."

Saracens RFC is one of a series of AVIVA Premiership Rugby clubs working with Gatorade to encourage players of all levels to stay ahead of the game and improve their performance. Owen Farrell and Brad Barritt were at Saracens training ground filming a series of coaching videos to be featured online next month. Gatorade is the official hydration partner of the AVIVA Premiership.

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