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Aviva Premiership: Saracens v Exeter Preview
Our rugby scribe gives his verdict on Saturday's headline Aviva Premiership clash between Saracens and Exeter.
Only seven points separates third-placed Exeter from second-placed Saracens, with the two sides set to collide at Allianz Park on Saturday.
Saracens v Exeter | Saturday 7 January | Allianz Park | 17:00
To Win (80 mins)
Saracens 1/4 | Draw 22/1 | Exeter Chiefs 33/10
Although Saracens managed a 16-12 victory at Leicester on New Year's Day, failure to collect a bonus-point has seen Wasps leapfrog them into first position on the overall standings.
Sarries will be hurting, and will look to flaunt their proverbial muscle when they host Exeter this weekend, having recorded five wins from their last six matches in all competitions.
The North London lads will be confident of dispatching a tricky Chiefs side at home, and will be further motivated by the fact that Wasps sit only one point ahead of them on the overall table.
With star players such as Owen Farrell and Jamie George in such stupendous form, Mark McCall will be expecting a big game from his defending champions.
Exeter are unbeaten since their November 11th Champions Cup defeat to Bordeaux-Begles, and their ascendance to the top three of the Aviva Premiership was complete with their recent 17-11 away defeat of Bath (whom they leapfrogged).
This Chiefs side will be highly motivated to claim another big scalp this weekend, and close the gap between themselves and the top two with a potential win against the side that pipped them in last season's final.
Verdict: Saracens 1/4
Although both teams have been playing great rugby recently, expect Saracens to come out trumps this weekend. Playing at home, and with September's 34-13 defeat of the same opposition (not to mention last season's title decider) still fresh in the players' minds, the Sarries boys should do the job here by 10 points or more.