Saracens winger Alex Lewington heaped praise on his side’s resolve as they ran out 26-12 winners against a determined Newcastle Falcons side at Allianz Park.

Tries from Sean Maitland and Max Malins gave Sarries the lead after Tane Takulua’s boot had got the visitors on the board.

And despite some robust defending from Newcastle, Nick Tompkins and Alex Lozowski crossed late on to secure a crucial bonus point.

“It’s just massive – there were a few errors in the first half but you can’t fault the effort of the boys. It was second to none,” the 27-year-old told Saracens.

“We were really strong defensively and pushed them back up the pitch, so in that sense, we will be pretty happy.

“If you look at some of the X-factor players they’ve got, such as Vereniki Goneva, Joel Matavesi and Takulua – to keep them quiet is pretty impressive.”

A bonus-point win keeps Mark McCall’s side within touching distance of league leaders Exeter Chiefs as the business end of the season approaches.

And with the Falcons coming into the game off the back of three consecutive wins, Lewington knew his side couldn’t rest on their laurels going into the fixture.

Lewington, who replaced the injured Liam Williams, made up a much-changed Saracens’ squad where over half of the 23 came through the club’s academy.

He added: “Out of the blocks, they were really physical and up for it – but as the game went on, you could see the desire from us to push on and get the win and the bonus point.

“Being able to grind out a win with boys like myself, who’ve been in and out of the squad, shows that throughout the squad we’ve got players who can step up.

“This should hold us in good stead going into the end of the season.”