Saracens boss Mark McCall was left to rue "one of the great kicks of all time" as his team's bid for a European and domestic trophy double ended at Sandy Park.

Exeter substitute Henry Slade's pin-point 60-metre touchfinder a minute from time set up Exeter's winning score in a pulsating Aviva Premiership play-off clash that ended with the Chiefs heading to Twickenham next Saturday.

Exeter drove the resulting lineout, and Chiefs' replacement back-row forward Sam Simmonds touched down to claim an 18-16 win.

Seven days after lifting the European Champions Cup by beating Clermont Auvergne, Saracens looked to have again dug deep as replacement wing Mike Ellery's 76th-minute touchdown appeared to floor the Chiefs.

But Devon's finest, unbeaten in the Premiership since October, clawed out a gripping victory following an earlier Jack Nowell try and eight points from skipper Gareth Steenson.

"We had the game with two minutes left, but then came one of the great kicks of all time from Henry Slade," Saracens rugby director McCall said.

"He puts that kick anywhere else, and I would be sitting here talking about one of the great wins and fights from a team who were a bit tired.

"Of course we are sad, and it is painful, but we can be unbelievably proud of that second-half performance.

"Well done to Exeter. We wish them all the best for next weekend. For them to reach the final in successive seasons is tremendous.

"They were outstanding in the second 20 minutes of the first half. It felt like we were hanging on, and we looked tired, but what I am most proud about is what happened in the second half.

"We conceded (a try) early, and a lot of teams then just fall away, but we kept on fighting, scrapping and finding a way to stay in the contest. We showed all our experience.

"We didn't do much wrong, and we can hold our heads up high in terms of the season we've had."

Saracens, conquerors of Exeter in last season's Premiership Twickenham showpiece, had hoped to emulate Leicester 15 years ago by retaining European and domestic titles, but the Chiefs had other ideas.

Wing Chris Wyles scored a 57th-minute try, with captain Owen Farrell kicking two penalties for Saracens, yet Exeter had just enough in the tank to keep alive hopes of being crowned English champions for the first time in their 146-year history.

Reflecting on the win, Exeter captain Steenson said: "It was terrific. We said for Henry to go for it with the kick. It had to be within a certain range to give us a chance, and fair play to him, it was a heck of a shot.

"He had to step up and hit it, and he showed a bit of class there, showed a bit of bottle and put us in a good position. It's up there in terms of great kicks.

"Saracens threw everything at us, which we knew they would. We had to get ourselves in the right part of the pitch to put a bit of pressure on. We got the opportunity, then Henry knocked the kick and the rest is history."

Exeter lost 28-20 against Saracens in last year's Premiership final, but Steenson added: "We are in a much different place compared to last year. We have talked very much about being champions this year.

"Maybe last year, we were just happy to be in the final. A lot of people say you have to go through finals and lose them to put yourself in a good position.

"We've had some incredible days here, and with four minutes to go, it still felt like it was do-able. We were very calm.

"This squad has moved on, and we are very much driving ourselves to go and win the thing. There is no point in being in a final and not winning it.

"We will get ready to go hard next week."