By Chris Foy for the Daily Mail
Published: 21:41 BST, 9 September 2020 | Updated: 23:34 BST, 9 September 2020
Saracens exuded pride and defiance on Wednesday night, on and off the pitch, as their rookie line-up frustrated title-chasing Sale – and Mark McCall was bullish about how his side can cope without Owen Farrell.
The relegation-bound Premiership champions discovered on Tuesday night that their fly-half and England captain would be unavailable for the rest of this disrupted domestic season after being handed a five-match ban for a dangerous tackle on Wasps' teenage playmaker, Charlie Atkinson.
Their collective response was emphatically positive.
A reserve Saracens team rallied from a poor start to deny powerful Sale a bonus point
First, a reserve Saracens team rallied from a poor start at the AJ Bell Stadium to deny powerful Sale a bonus point.
Then their director of rugby struck an up-beat tone when asked to consider the enforced absence of Farrell, especially in Dublin next weekend for the holders' momentous Heineken European Champions Cup quarter-final against imperious Leinster.
'Owen has gone for us for this season unless we reach the Champions Cup Final,' said McCall. 'He is tremendously regretful about the incident and he pleaded guilty to the