Two tries from Thomas Waldrom helped Exeter Chiefs claim an impressive 24-18 victory over Northampton at Franklin’s Gardens.
Two tries from number eight Thomas Waldrom helped Exeter Chiefs claim an impressive 24-18 win over league leaders Northampton Saints on Friday.
Victory moves the Chiefs two points behind the Saints, as they replace Saracens in second spot. Sarries travel to Leicester Tigers on Sunday.
It took Exeter just two minutes to get across the whitewash as hooker Luke Cowan-Dickie went over, with Gareth Steenson kicking the extras.
Stephen Myler responded from the tee a minute later and again in the fourteenth minute to make it 6-7 but then a try double from Waldrom before the half-time break sent the Chiefs in 21-6 in front.
Steenson landed a penalty in the 54th minute before Tom Stephenson and Jamie Elliott put Saints within six points at 24-18, which was how things stayed until full-time as Exeter held on.
Tries: Stephenson, Elliott
Pen: Myler 2
Tries: Cowan-Dickie, Waldrom 2
Con: Steenson 3
Northampton: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Jamie Elliott, 13 Tom Stephenson, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Phil Dowson (c), 7 Ben Nutley, 6 Calum Clark, 5 Christian Day, 4 Samu Manoa, 3 Salesi Ma’afu, 2 Mike Haywood, 1 Alex Waller.
Replacements: 16 Ross McMillan, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 Alex Woolford, 20 Teimana Harrison, 21 Joel Hodgson, 22 James Wilson, 23 Dom Waldouck.
Exeter: 15 Phil Dollman, 14 Jack Nowell, 13 Henry Slade, 12 Sam Hill, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Gareth Steenson, 9 Will Chudley, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Don Armand, 6 Ben White, 5 Damian Welch, 4 Dean Mumm (c), 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 1 Carl Rimmer.
Replacements: 16 Greg Batemen, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Moray Low, 19 Ryan Caldwell, 20 Kai Horstmann, 21 Haydn Thomas, 22 Ian Whitten, 23 Byron McGuigan.
Referee: Dean Richards
Assistant referees: Ross Campbell, Gordon Goodliffe
Television match official: Rowan Kitt