If fit and selected, April’s game will be the England centre’s first experience of playing in Milton Keynes, and he’s anticipating a memorable afternoon for the Aviva Premiership Round 20 clash with Saracens.
“stadiummk is a pretty special place, and the Saints have played some big games there in the past,” he says. “For the boys who are involved against Saracens it’ll be pretty special. It’s a World Cup venue, which just goes to show what the stadium is about and it’s going to be hugely exciting for the team and the club to have the change of venue.
“Franklin’s Gardens is our home, but we’re only moving this game a few minutes down the road to a spectacular stadium, which is going to give our boys a bit of an edge in our performance as well.”
With the Saints currently sitting at the top of the Aviva Premiership table and MK Dons well in the hunt for promotion into football’s Championship, this part of the East Midlands is enjoying some good times on the sporting field.
And with tickets at a premium for stadiummk’s three Rugby World Cup matches later in the year Burrell says that packing the venue to the rafters will set the tone for the oval ball sport in 2015, too.
“MK Dons have had a successful season from a football perspective, and it’s important to get rugby in that stadium and get the people of Milton Keynes to come along and watch Northampton,” he adds. “We’re basically next-door-neighbours after all, and it’ll be brilliant for their supporters to get there and get behind the rugby lads. And in World Cup year the people of Northampton and the Midlands can get out there and make it a spectacle.”
The match on April 25th will also form part of England Rugby 2015’s testing programme, allowing the organisers to test elements of match day delivery at Stadium MK ahead of hosting three Rugby World Cup 2015 matches: France v Canada on Thursday, October 1st; Samoa v Japan on Saturday, October 3rd; and Fiji v Uruguay on Tuesday, October 6th.
Tickets for the Aviva Premiership clash between the Saints and Saracens are now on general sale through Ticketmaster. Head to www.tinyurl.com/SAI-SAR-1415 and follow the straightforward instructions to book online 24/7.
Hospitality packages are also available for supporters who want to make a special day of it at stadiumMK, including a four-course meal, unique insight from Saints players before and after the match, complimentary house wine, draught beer and soft drinks, and post-match refreshments. For more information and to book your place email [email protected]