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Mark McCall names Saracens side for Champions Cup semi-final

Mark McCall Saracens

Captain Brad Barritt has been named in Saracens starting line-up for their Champions Cup semi-final against Munster.

The centre had feared his season was over after suffering ankle ligament damage in the 56-27 quarter-final victory over Glasgow Warriors early last month.

But despite being stretchered off, the 32-year-old returns for Saracens who are aiming for a third final in four years.

Asked if he felt his participation in Saracens domestic and European ambitions were over at the time of the injury, Barritt admitted he had strong doubts.

“Yes, in terms of pain, I had a pretty good inclination; I thought it was quite serious.

“But we have put a lot of time and effort into trying to turn it around.

“It is probably credit to (physio) Richard Bamford who has been looking after me every day for the last three weeks.

“If this game was a week later you probably would have only pushed for four weeks.

Veteran scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth follows Barritt in overcoming an injury and is set to make his 100th appearance in European rugby from the bench.

In a major boost to the front row, Mako Vunipola starts at loosehead prop in the Ricoh Arena clash.

USA international Tito Lamositele continues at tighthead to pack down with England duo Vunipola and George in the front row, while Maro Itoje and Billy Vunipola also start.

Saracens team to play Munster in the Champions Cup semi-final (15:00 kick-off):

Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Alex Lozowski, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 Liam Williams, 10 Owen Farrell (capt), 9 Ben Spencer; 1 Mako Vunipola, 2 Jamie George, 3 Titi Lamositele, 4 Maro Itoje, 5 George Kruis, 6 Mike Rhodes, 7 Jackson Wray, 8 Billy Vunipola

Replacement: 16 Joe Gray, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Will Skelton, 20 Schalk Burger, 21 Richard Wigglesworth, 22 Nick Tompkins, 23 David Strettle

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