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Heineken Cup final: Saracens' Matt Stevens hails Toulon's Jonny Wilkinson

Last Updated: 21/05/14 12:05pm

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Matt Stevens has paid tribute to Jonny Wilkinson ahead of Saracens' clash with Toulon in the Heineken Cup final on Saturday.

The World Cup-winning fly-half will draw to a close his 17-year career with Heineken Cup and Top 14 finals in successive weeks.

Stevens, who played with Wilkinson for England, knows it will be tough to stop the 34-year-old as Sarries go for their first ever Heineken Cup crown against the holders at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium, which will be shown live on Sky Sports 3D and Sky Sports 2 HD from 4pm.

He told Sky Sports: "Jonny, you know, he's been a force of nature in the Premiership, in international rugby, the top 14 - he's done it all, the guy's a legend.

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"I don't think we can nullify what he does but it's definitely something we take into account when we prepare.

"He sets an incredible example. I remember I played for England with him, he was someone you looked up to and you tried to strive for the perfection, I don't think I ever got anywhere near it but I strived for the perfection that he went for and yes, I think when you see someone like that in the squad, it ultimately raises the game.

"I know we have that at Saracens. Everyone is pushing each other and that's the nature of a good team where you have good competition for places which we have throughout the squad.

"And if everyone is pushing each other and no one is sure of their place in the team, it just makes for a better team."

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