Alivereti Raka grabs hat-trick as Clermont Auvergne maul Saracens

• Pool Two: Saracens 14-46 Clermont Auvergne
• French side leapfrog Saracens to go top of pool

Perhaps Saracens will wish the doors stayed closed after all. The European champions have swept all before them on the continent in recent years but this was a record thrashing at the hands of Clermont side, irate that this contest was not played on Sunday, every bit as resounding as the scoreline suggests.

Alivereti Raka scored three of their six tries and was near untouchable on the left wing, Morgan Parra imperious at scrum-half and Fritz Lee a colossus despite his yellow card. But Saracens simply could not shake the snow off the roof. Defensively they were dreadful, missing a staggering 37 tackles and they played nothing like a side who were unbeaten in their previous 20 European matches – a run that dates back to the 2015 semi-final defeat by Clermont.

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