Heineken Cup: Saracens chief Mark McCall highlights Sivivatu as Clermont dangerman
Last Updated: 24/04/14 5:46pm
Sitiveni Sivivatu: Identified as Clermont Auvergne's dangerman
Saracens coach Mark McCall has highlighted New Zealand wing Sitiveni Sivivatu as Clermont Auvergne's dangerman ahead of their Heineken Cup semi-final on Saturday - live on Sky Sports 2.
While Sarries may possess the competition's top try-scorer this season in Chris Ashton with nine, it is the threat posed by opposite number Sivivatu that has McCall concerned.
While the 32-year-old Fiji-born flyer may not have pulled on an All Blacks jersey for nearly three years, the Saracens supremo is still acutely aware of his match-changing qualities.
"You wouldn't concentrate on one person but if someone is going to pull a rabbit out of a hat it's going to be Sivivatu," stated McCall.
"He is amazing. He's got the most metres and offloads in the Heineken (European) Cup and he pops up where you least expect him.
"If you switch off for just one second and you don't stay alive and in the moment, he will hurt you. They (Clermont) have got a few players like that, but he's the one who can hurt you big-time."
While Saracens head into this weekend's showdown at Twickenham with 'home' advantage, McCall is all too aware how little that can count for.
Men against boys
Indeed, two years ago the same opponents arrived at Vicarage Road and comprehensively outplayed the Londoners at the quarter-final stage of the same competition to secure a 22-3 victory.
They came up short against French opposition again last season when losing to Toulon, however, McCall is confident his side are now a different beast and well capable of gaining revenge.
"We would hold our hands up and say that day (two years ago) was a little 'men against boys'," he recalled.
"We felt we were playing with one hand tied behind our back, we were a bit lightweight and we changed a lot after that.
"The Toulon semi last year, they didn't score a try that day, and we had an opportunity after half-time.
"We definitely had progressed from the Clermont game to that, and we feel we are in a much better position 12 months later now.
"I know how far we've come. It's obvious. It was men against boys last time (against Clermont); it's not going to be like that this weekend."