The two 10s will go head-to-head this weekend

Owen Farrell has praised Fin Smith’s progress in the fly-half shirt before they go head-to-head this Friday.

Farrell’s Saracens travel to Smith’s Northampton Saints to battle in the Premiership semi-finals. This means Smith and Farrell will be competing directly against one another and the Saracens 10 knows the talent he is up against.

Read more: Premiership semis

“He has obviously come on leaps and bounds this year,” Farrell said. “He took over the reins at the back end of last year and has accelerated everything he has been doing. He was obviously a fantastic player last year and he has really kicked on.

“He is nice and relaxed when he plays the game. He is a relaxed character from what I know of him but he is not relaxed in terms of sitting back. He’s relaxed in his nature but wants to be at the front of everything. It’s a good mix.

“He has had some big moments this year, drop goals and things in the European Cup away at Thomond Park which are always good moments to be involved in.

“He and George Furbank have been key in how the attack in terms of playing right at the line, being able to show and go themselves, being able to bring defenders onto them, and playing people through holes.

“That’s probably kicked on further this year. They always seem to be in the fight so yeah, he has come on, he has come on really well.”

The match is potentially Farrell’s last in a Saracens shirt. He announced he would be leaving to join Racing 92 on a two-year deal. If Saracens win then Farrell’s last game will come in the final against either Bath or Sale.

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