Derby Day wins.
I have been lucky enough to have been involved in 1 derby day win already in my short career. That was at Franklins Gardens in front of the trusty faithful and I got about 5 minutes to make my home debut. But a derby day win away from home against Leicester, is something very few have done for a long time in a Northampton shirt. In fact 10 or 11 years ago on a wet muddy afternoon a fresh faced Stephen Myler kicked Northampton to victory against a Tigers side, who hadn’t lost in nearly 3 years at Welford Road. Unfortunately for us Northampton folk, it hasn’t happened since. Time to change that?
Last weekend we endured a difficult afternoon and a poor second half performance against a classy Saracens team meant they ran out heavy winners. Every time we dropped the ball or made a mistake they seemed to score. This result left us as a group feeling deflated and wondering who to look at and where to go. But as a professional sports team you can’t rest on your laurels, and what better way to get back on the horse than to be playing your local rivals away from home? Leicester pushing for top 4 and us down and out with nothing to play for meant that we were the underdogs. We had two choices, either roll over and have our bellies tickled. Or go there and have a fight and make it a tough afternoon for them. The boys chose the latter and we went to Welford road with a chip on our shoulder and showed some true grit and heart.
A few key performances from the team were, Ehren Painter (prop). He is in my year at the saints and he came off the bench to make two crucial penalties. One at the scrum where he dominated Fraser Balmain, and one where he got over the ball 2 yards out. This turnover probably sealed the game and it was so nice to see a close mate doing it! Another great performance was from Ben Foden who showed brilliant finishing ability and a bit of his old flair. This was nice to see, as around the club he’s one of the nicest guys who always has time for the younger lads.
This was a brilliant win for Northampton Saints as we try to build a bit of momentum taking us into next season. With two games left we will be giving nothing less than 100% for the fans and for each other. With boys leaving and moving on to new clubs, boys retiring and deciding its time to hang up the boots, it is a great opportunity to give them the send off they deserve.
As always, thank you for all your support. It really means a lot.