Mallinder delighted with victory

Date published: December 24 2016

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder was pleased with his side’s response after a tough period as they beat Sale Sharks on Friday.

Tries from Ben Foden, Tom Wood and Luther Burrell saw the Saints to a crucial victory following back-to-back European losses to Leinster.

Following the win, Mallinder was clearly delighted as he knew Sale would be a difficult opponent, equally eager to end their own poor run.

“It was a good win, we had to fight hard for it. Sale did not give up. It is a shame we did not go on and score one of those disallowed tries but we have a win,” he told Premiership Rugby.

“There was a lot of good intent, I thought we attacked with accuracy so it is very pleasing.

“We have changed our warm-up a little bit and we always talk about wanting to make a good start but in recent weeks we haven’t.

“We have conceded tries and then we have a 10 or 14 points deficit but last night was really pleasing. The players looked fresh and we are delighted.”

Sale’s only points came through a Denny Solomona try as their boss, Steve Diamond, reflected on a disappointing performance at Franklin’s Gardens.

“I think we were taught a lesson. Every time Northampton got into out 22 they took something out of it and we panicked just before half time and gave a yellow card away,” he said.

“We had a good spell in the second half but we could not quite get over the try line.

“We went a little bit off script but it is a difficult place to come. We have a lot of spirit in the side but we are not clicking.

“The losses are irrelevant. You just need to do it in training. The side we played probably cost double what ours did but we can’t always use that excuse.”