Gatland ‘comfortable’ with Saracens’ stars limited game time

Lions boss Warren Gatland is “comfortable” with the lack of game time Saracens’ stars have had this season.

So says Mark McCall, whose relegated Sarries side finally play their first league match of the campaign in Penzance tomorrow.

The Londoners’ six England players have not hit the heights in the Six Nations and fingers have been pointed at their rustiness.

But McCall said: “I’ve spoken to Warren Gatland and he’s very comfortable with the game time our players have had. I’m also very comfortable about them playing the remainder of their season with us.”

McCall indicated that he expects Owen Farrell, Maro Itoje, Elliot Daly, Jamie George and the Vunipola brothers to play their part in the second tier Championship.

“They will be really involved when it comes to being part of the squad and rolling their sleeves up,” he said. “Some of that will involve playing and some of that will involve helping to prepare the team.

“But we are all in it together and no-one is going to go anywhere. They won’t play in every game, I don’t think, but they will play enough. I think they’ll arrive on a Lions tour ready to go.

“There have been some really encouraging noises from them about how keen they are, once the Six Nations is over, to come back, roll their sleeves up and get stuck in with their team-mates.”

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