Michael Paterson said that the Wanderers’ place in the Aviva ‘A’ League final was reward for a season’s worth of hard work.
After finishing top of the Northern Conference in the round-robin stages of the tournament the Wanderers took on Saracens at Franklin’s Gardens last night.
The evenly-matched teams served up a competitive game of rugby in front of nearly 1,700 supporters, and while Saracens’ Ben Spencer kept slotting the penalties it was the Wanderers who got the tries.
Ben Nutley finished a driving maul late in the first half, with scrum-half Tom Kessell reaching over in the second to seal the 16-12 win. JJ Hanrahan kicked the remaining six points.
“It’s a great achievement for us,” Paterson told SaintsTV. “The boys have worked hard all year. We had tough conditions with a slippery ball, but we kept the try line clean and got the win.
“The boys pride ourselves on our defence. Saracens are a tough outfit and it’s really good to keep them from crossing our line.
“We stuck together and went to the maul that worked for us and got the momentum. Then Tom Kessell scoring the try sealed the game.”
Paterson has led the Wanderers with aplomb in recent weeks, appearing both in the second row and back row and using his experience to guide the youngsters around him in the team. And while he is understandably delighted to have reached the final he is under no illusions as to the challenge ahead of the team next Monday when they head to Sandy Park to face Exeter Braves, who overcame Newcastle in the other semi-final.
“Exeter is a tough place to play,” he added. “The first team came up just short, so hopefully we can go one better next Monday and get some silverware in the cabinet.”