The Saracens have confirmed the list of 44 players going to Bermuda for their Atlantic Rugby Cup preseason tour and a kickoff game against the USA Islanders on Thursday.
The North London club and two-time defending European champions have already been together since the beginning of July, and players who were with their national teams or the British and Irish Lions have now completed their rest period and are back with the team, too.
"They've all been working hard, as they always do," Saracens performance director Phil Morrow said in a team release. "Generally, you get the best of the players over that period, everyone comes back hungry after the break. Everyone's quite happy, the weather is generally good, and everyone feels that they are getting better."
The team arrived in Bermuda on Sunday and will get set for their clash with the USA Islanders. The game is live-streaming on FloRugby and will also benefit Beyond Rugby, a charity founded by former pro wrestler and current pro wrestling announcer John Layfield that assists at-risk youth in Bermuda.
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"No matter what you do in the preseason you can't really replicate what you get from a game," Morrow said. "The levels of contact are always a bit higher. So, it gives us a chance to practice under a bit of pressure, running against a live opponent."
Among the players selected to the Saracens' 44-man squad are British and Irish Lions players Owen Farrell, Jamie George, George Kruis, Maro Itoje, Mako Vunipola, and Liam Williams. New signees Calum Clark, Dominic Day, Kieran Longbottom, Will Skelton, and Christopher Tolofua will also be in the touring party, as will Academy players Ben Earl, Matt Gallagher, Nick Isiekwe, Max Malins, Dom Morris, and Jack Nay.
Former USA captain Chris Wyles will also be in the group, but Eagle prop Titi Lamositele is still recovering from injury and will not make the trip.
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"This is the first time this preseason we've all been together, with every player involved," Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall said. "Bermuda is a fantastic place for us to prepare for what will be another demanding season, and the tour gives us the opportunity to integrate some of our newer faces into the group -- we're really looking forward to the week ahead."
Saracens Bermuda Touring PartyForwards
Richard Barrington, Schalk Brits, Schalk Burger, Calum Clark, Joel Conlon, Dominic Day, Ben Earl, Juan Figallo, Mark Flanagan, Jamie George, Nick Isiekwe, Maro Itoje, Vincent Koch, George Kruis, Kieran Longbottom, Jack Nay, Michael Rhodes, Will Skelton, Scott Spurling, Hayden Thompson-Stringer, Christopher Tolofua, Billy Vunipola, Mako Vunipola, Jackson Wray.
Brad Barritt (captain), Marcelo Bosch, Nathan Earle, Mike Ellery, Owen Farrell, Matt Gallagher, Alex Goode, Tom Griffiths, Alex Lozowski, Sean Maitland, Max Malins, Dom Morris, Ben Spencer, Duncan Taylor, Henry Taylor, Nick Tompkins, Tom Whiteley, Richard Wigglesworth, Liam Williams, Chris Wyles.
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