In their first Premiership outing since their automatic relegation was confirmed, Saracens were soundly beaten by London rivals Harlequins.

Harlequins 41-14 Saracens: Derby defeat for depleted champions


Saracens were handed a resounding 41-14 defeat by Harlequins in the absence of several key players as they returned to Premiership action for the first time since their automatic relegation was confirmed.

With seven players at an England training camp ahead of the Six Nations and Billy Vunipola out with a broken arm, Saracens – who will spend next season in the Championship after breaching salary cap regulations – succumbed to a chastening loss as the rain lashed down at Twickenham Stoop.

Quins welcomed captain Chris Robshaw back into the line-up and took the lead inside two minutes, Alex Dombrandt putting the disappointment of being overlooked by Eddie Jones aside by winning a turnover and setting up Danny Care to touch down.

Cadan Murley finished off a sweeping move in the right corner in the 11th minute and had a second try after a stunning dummy from Marcus Smith helped make it 19-0.

Alex Lozowski reduced the arrears before half-time but Gabriel Ibitoye and Paul Lasike crossed within 10 minutes of the restart to establish a 24-point cushion for Quins.

Manu Vunipola added the extras after teeing up Dom Morris for a Sarries try out wide, but Martin Landajo raced clear after intercepting the ball to round-off a bonus-point triumph that moved Quins level with fifth-placed Bristol.



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