'He's pretty unique in terms of his skill set for loosehead prop'

Saracens have explained how chuffed they have been with the input of Mako Vunipola in recent months, outlining that he adopted an Owen Farrell-like coaching perspective off the pitch while injured before quickly returning to form when he finally got to pl

The 31-year-old limped off with an ankle syndesmosis problem in the March 5 win over Leicester and an operation was required for him to overcome that issue. Much like England and Saracens skipper Farrell did when he was out injured and was seen assisting his club coaches, assistant Kevin Sorrell has now outlined that Vunipola did likewise while he was sidelined. 

It was the weekend of May 14 when the prop was passed fit and he has since started twice, versus Toulon in the Challenge Cup semi-finals and again the following week against Northampton in the Gallagher Premiership before ending also his England exile with a recall for a three-day training camp in London.  

It left Saracens backs coach Sorrell delighted with the influence recently wielded by Vunipola. “When he wasn’t on the pitch for those ten weeks had an impact off the pitch with his rugby intelligence,” explained the coach to RugbyPass ahead of this weekend’s Premiership game at Gloucester. 

“Mako is a smart player and he has been able to sit with other coaches and players and help them in terms of feedback or ideas for what we need in certain games.