Sharman happy to stay on with Saints

Northampton Saints have announced that Brett Sharman has signed a new contract with the club. The 23-year-old hooker joined the Saints from South African outfit Blue Bulls in November 2008.

After making his first team debut in January 2009 he went on to make 11 appearances in the remainder of the campaign, including in the semi-final and final of the European Challenge Cup.

He has matched that figure already this season, including three starts in the Saints’ run to the LV= Cup semi-finals. Although born in Durban, Sharman, who is also finishing a degree in transport economics, qualifies for England thanks to his grandparents and he has a British passport.

Sharman says that being at the Saints has helped him improve as a player.

“I’ve definitely achieved more here and I’m never going to have any regrets when I look back,” he said. “This is the best move I’ve made in my career.

“I’ve changed everything on my game. Me and Dorian looked at my throwing before the season and I’ve changed my whole set up. I can’t even imagine going back to how I was throwing.”

“We go through things that can improve and work on new techniques so Northampton is like a school of learning for me at the moment.

“I’m also learning a lot from Dylan, both in scrums, lineouts and in general play. I picked up a lot of pace in the pre season so I’m trying to get into good positions to make that work.

“Learning under a great player and a great ex-player is making me the best I can be and going up against Dylan who is the best player in his position in the country right now is a good benchmark to set myself.”

Director of rugby Jim Mallinder says that Sharman remains a promising talent whose best is yet to come.

“Brett has worked very hard on all aspects of his game with Dorian West,” he said.

“At just 23 he is still young in terms of front row forwards, and as he gets more experience in the Guinness Premiership and Heineken Cup under his belt he will only get better. I’m certainly happy that he will be at Franklin’s Gardens for the future.”

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