Cockerill, confirmed in the senior position on Friday evening after a successful spell as acting head coach, had tries from Scott Hamilton and Ayoola Erinle, and an injury-time penalty from Sam Vesty, to thank as a 16-13 victory at Vicarage Road kept Tigers on top of the Guinness Premiership table with one game of the regular season remaining.
“Give us credit for the win, we kept the ball and we kept playing right to the death,” said Cockerill.
“The performance was not our best but, after all the emotion of last week’s Heineken Cup quarter-final and everything that has happened over the last couple of weeks, I think that was always going to be the case.
“Saracens have a very good record at home and we are only the second team to win here in the league this season.
“We didn’t lack any commitment, but we were just not accurate enough at times and we made too many mistakes with the ball in hand.”
Tigers now face Bristol at the Walkers Stadium on Saturday knowing that a win will guarantee a home tie in the Guinness Premiership semi-finals.
Tickets are available now for Saturday, kick-off is at 3pm. Contact the Tigers ticket office on 0844 856 1880, call in at Welford Road or book match tickets online.