Saracens look bound for the play-offs as Stevens steals show against Bath

ENGLAND World Cup hopeful Matt Stevens produced an inspired display against his former side Bath as Saracens tightened their grip on second place in the Premiership with a 20-9 victory.

The South African-born prop, capped 32 times by England but not once since 2008, faced his former club for the first time since leaving the Recreation Ground in the wake of failing a drugs test that landed him with a two-year ban. Winger David Strettle enjoyed a lively afternoon and scored the only try while Alex Goode kicked five penalties, but it was the forwards that did the real damage.

“I came into Saracens with everything sorted out. Week on week it’s something I keep an eye on and I’m in a very stable environment,” said Stevens (right). “It’s not just about what happens on the park and that has made it easy to stay focused and be healthy. I feel like a 20 year-old who’s just started the game.”

Elsewhere, London Irish boosted their hopes of a top-six finish as they came from behind to beat Wasps 25-12 at the Madejski Stadium. The visitors had held an early 12-3 lead but Exiles winger Tom Horner then kicked six penalties and a try from David Paice settled matters.