Rugby Union

Is the 28-year-old set for the new season? (©GettyImages)
Is the 28-year-old set for the new season? (©GettyImages).

Is Alistair Hargreaves the main man for Saracens?

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After the departure of Steve Borthwick, a new leader was to be decided for Saracens and South African lock Alistair Hargreaves won the votes and received the armband for the upcoming season, but was this the right move?

Last season was a one to forget for Saracens' fans, having reached two finals yet coming away from both empty handed.

Firstly, they lost to Toulon in the Heineken Cup final 23-6 on Johnny Wilkinson's final game before losing to Northampton Saints 24-20 the following week at Twickenham in the Aviva Premiership final.


Borthwick then decided to hang up his boots at the end of the season, as now the 28-year-old has stepped into the former England captain's role and the South African may find it a harder than first considered.

But is he the right man? This will be Hargreaves third season with Saracens, having joined from Super Rugby team Sharks in 2012 after seven years in South Africa.

In his two previous seasons the lock played 30 games scoring one try and helped his team win 22 matches, while on the international stage he played four times for South Africa in their 2010 test against Australia.


But there are of course other options within the squad who were capable of leading Saracens this season.

Jacques Burger and Kelly Brown, who has captained Scotland, are influential figures who have spent a considerable amount of time at the club, or even fly-half Owen Farrell who is one of Sarries' top point scorers.

Whatever the case Hargreaves needs to change the continuous disappointment in the amount of silverware the club has achieved, considering the squad Mark McCall has at his disposal.


Saracens have only won one Aviva Premiership title in 2010, and since then they have lost out in two semi-finals, as for the last two years they have finished top of the table but have failed in the final stages of the play-offs.

This season they recorded 87 points, the most points achieved in a Saracens' season, but only Northampton Saints stood in their way beating McCall's men 24-20 with Alex Waller scoring a try in the 100th minute to win the title.

New campaign

It was another season where Sarries got so close but yet again failed at the final hurdle, as Hargreaves will need to step up and lead his side to glory along with a much deserved title.

McCall's decision is resting on whether the South African can showcase his leadership qualities, and with the 28-year-old at the helm for the next couple of seasons it could see the wolf pack finally roar into life.

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Heineken Cup
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Owen Farrell
Aviva Premiership

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