Mallinder turning his attention to the Premiership

Northampton Saints Director of rugby Jim Mallinder has put Saturday’s win over the Scarlets firmly behind him by saying “we’re focused on Bristol in two weeks’ time.”


The Saints earned a place in the EDF Energy Cup semi-finals with their bonus-point win over the Scarlets. But with their date at the Ricoh Arena not until late March Mallinder says that attention must turn back to the Guinness Premiership and the trip to the Memorial Stadium in a fortnight.


“Progressing in a tournament is always exciting and the semi-final will be something to look forward to when it comes around next year,” he said.

 

“However there is a danger that our season becomes all about that match and not the months of games we have in the meantime.

 

“The most important aim this season is to stay in the Guinness Premiership and our next game at Bristol is crucial.

 

“We have built up some good form in Europe and in the EDF Energy Cup. But our attention must now be focused on winning at the Memorial Stadium in two weeks’ time.”

Mallinder praised the way the team responded to going 10-0 down in the early minutes to tie the game before half-time and then pull away after the break and says that this resolve must become a standard for the rest of the season.


“Obviously we were well off our game in the first few minutes and will work on how to stop this happening again,” he said.


“But we showed real guts to pull ourselves back into the contest. We remained calm, stuck to our game plan and took opportunities when they came.

 

“There was also some terrific scramble defence that prevented two more Scarlets tries. What we have to do now is show these same characteristics when the next phase of the Guinness Premiership starts in two weeks.”

 

Rugbyweek.com

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