5 things we learnt from Round 8 of the Gallagher Premiership

Chiefs are looking unstoppable

After their convincing win against Gloucester, Exeter still sit top of the table having not lost a game this season. What is even more impressive is their points difference total of 120 points. If it comes down to the wire at the end of the season against Saracens for that top spot or even a home semi-final, then the points difference that they are accumulating could be their golden pass. Their game from the weekend saw Gloucester start well however, the Chiefs started to run away with the game in the second half and opened the gap that Gloucester couldn’t quite close. As we head into the Christmas period, Exeter are the ones with the Christmas crackers.

Saracens held their win despite a late Welford Road roar

After an impressive and dominating first half from the Premiership champions, Leicester had a late comeback despite being 3-21 down at half time. After a re-group at the break from Tigers, they unleashed a powerful pack who put in strong 40-minute performance which subsequently saw Saracens go down to 14 men on two occasions. It was a match that no one really expected from the East Midlands side who have been struggling throughout the season. The first half, was predictable however the second was far beyond what anyone thought would happen.

Alex Lozowski fights back after being dropped from England squad 

If there is ever a way to stake your claim for an international jersey after being dropped it is to put in the performance that Alex Lozowski did and win MOM away from home. He caused havoc to the Tigers backline. The 28-year-old is one of rugby’s most versatile players.

He’s played at fly-half, full-back, outside centre and at the weekend we saw him play on the wing. He is a more than able ball carrier and is perfect in Saracens set up to be a second receiver. Lozowski admits he didn’t play well against Japan for England, in the match that ultimately cost him his place in the England squad. However, his performance at the weekend shows his determination to get back into the squad.

Newcastle finally got their win

Unless you are a Bath supporter your heart would have gone out to Newcastle at the weekend who extended their unbeaten run at home to four games. Following their very impressive season last year, making it to the semi-finals they have had a fall from grace over the last eight weeks. In Europe, they have beaten French giants Toulon however, domestically they have failed to find their form. Captain Toby Flood marked his 100thgame for the club with 11 points on the night and Blackadder’s men left it a little too late as he slowly kept extending the lead.

Worcester’s stats are top four worthy

Worcester’s win against Harlequins was mostly based around their incredible defensive efforts that they showed throughout the match. A colossal 205 tackles were made by Rory Duncan’s men with twelve players hitting the double figure mark. Harlequins only try of the game came through an intercepted pass by Joe Marchant as they could not find any space in the home defence. Worcester’s stats post-match said it all. 100% of their mauls were won 66/69 rucks were theirs (95% success rate) and a 92% win at lineout time; only losing one. If Worcester continue their defensive efforts like this, then not only top six but top four will be in reach.