sport

Vunipola fully fit for run-in

Billy Vunipola believes his six-week injury absence will ultimately help Saracens in their quest for domestic and European success this season.

The England No 8 was sidelined by an ankle injury earlier in the campaign that forced him to miss the Six Nations.

But he made his comeback in the 17-15 Heineken Cup quarter-final victory over Ulster on Saturday and is hoping to play a pivotal role in helping Saracens win silverware now he is back to full fitness.

"Physically I feel ready and that that's why the six weeks off was a blessing in disguise," Vunipola said. "I'd played a lot of games heading into the Ireland game when I was injured.

"When I was injured I said it was one of the worst things in my life because I was ill as well, which meant I dropped around four kilograms.

"But my mum was saying that maybe if I hadn't dropped the four kilograms then maybe I'd have broken my ankle instead of just spraining it.

"The six weeks gave me a chance to rest and that's why I was raring to go against Ulster.

"It could be one hell of a 10 weeks coming up, but it could be the saddest 10 weeks as well."

Saracens host Northampton on Sunday in a clash between the Aviva Premiership's top two teams in what is likely to be a dress rehearsal for the Twickenham final on 31 May.

The London club are also chasing European glory and face a Heineken Cup semi-final against Clermont in two weeks' time.