Planet Rugby

Challenge Cup enticing - Dickinson

16th January 2014 07:42

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Northampton v Sale Sam Dickinson tackled by Tommy Taylor

Powerhouse: Sam Dickinson

Sam Dickinson is adamant Northampton Saints would look to excel in the Challenge Cup should they drop out of Europe's top tournament.

Saints look set to fall short in their bid for a place in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals, needing a win over Castres on Friday before hoping results elsewhere are in their favour.

But Jim Mallinder's men do appear relatively assured of a berth in the latter stages of the Challenge Cup, with an away quarter-final on the cards.

And Dickinson claims he and his team-mates would not allow their continental enthusiasm to wane should they find themselves competing in the second-tier competition.

"It would be taken on as a brand new challenge," number eight Dickinson told the Northamptonshire Telegraph.

"It will be disappointing if we are out of the Heineken Cup, but we'll take that just as seriously and that will be the next target to win."

Of Saints' Heineken Cup campaign, Dickinson admits the side have been left disappointed by losses to Castres and Leinster, but states those defeats have offered something of a learning curve for the Premiership title-contenders.

"We've lost twice and it's not ideal," added Dickinson.

"It's a very tough group and you can't take anything for granted, but at the same time I think everyone's learned a lot from those losses.

"They've not been swept under the rug and hopefully that will push us forward as a squad."

  • Amlin Challenge Cup Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
Sunday , April 27
Wasps vs Bath13:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
  • Amlin Challenge Cup Results
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Amlin Challenge Cup
Sunday , April 6
Bath 39 - 7 BriveBath vs Brive Report
Wasps 36 - 24 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
Friday , April 4
Stade Francais 6 - 29 HarlequinsStade Francais vs Harlequins Report
Thursday , April 3
Sale Sharks 14 - 28 NorthamptonSale Sharks vs Northampton Report
More Amlin Challenge Cup results
  • Amlin Challenge Cup Table
Pool 1
Amlin Challenge Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Sale Sharks623
2Biarritz616
3Oyonnax612
4Worcester67
Pool 2
Amlin Challenge Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath628
2Bordeaux-Begles614
3Dragons614
4Mogliano Rugby60
Pool 3
Amlin Challenge Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Brive623
2Newcastle Falcons619
3Bucuresti610
4Calvisano62
Pool 4
Amlin Challenge Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1London Wasps627
2Bayonne615
3Grenoble612
4Viadana62
Pool 5
Amlin Challenge Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Stade Francais624
2London Irish624
3Cavalieri Prato611
4Lusitanos60