Saints scored eight tries in last night’s friendly with Championship side Bedford Blues but it was Saints’ newcomer David Ribbans that scooped up the biggest windfall, dotting down three times in the game for his first scores and first hat trick in a Saints shirt.
The young South African said that he was lucky to be in the right place at the right time and it was rather a whole team performance from Saints that got him his scores.
“I was lucky tonight with two off the back of a maul,” Ribbans told SaintsTV after the game at Goldington Road.
“But it was a great team performance tonight and I was just glad I could contribute to the team.
“There was a lot of running rugby which is good, we’d done a lot of that during the week so we just wanted to throw the ball around. It was tough conditions in the wet but the guys had good hands and it turned out to be a great game of rugby.”
With Bedford coming bringing the game within just two points minutes after the second half got underway, Ribbans said that Saints did not panic but rather just focused on staying tight as a team and keeping their hosts out.
“I think we just needed a bit of composure. We spoke at half time about how they were going to come for us in those first ten minutes and we needed to stay tight and fight it and then just go back to basics after that.
“That last five minutes kind of summed up what we wanted to do. The defence there, not letting them in, that’s where our strengths are. We’ve got a good defence, a good set piece and from there we can throw the ball around.”
Only having come to Northampton a few months ago, Ribbans said that his first experience of a Championship ground was something he enjoyed.
“It was a good place to come and play with a great crowd here tonight. It was great to put in a good performance and get a great win tonight.
“Of course I have played at ground like this back in South Africa, where the fans are right on top of you and we had a good bunch of people here, it was a cracking crowd which was nice.”
Looking ahead to next week’s all important local derby with Leicester Tigers, Ribbans commented on how important this game time was for the squad and how they will look to turn that into momentum as they turn to face Leicester next weekend.
“It’s always different when you play on the field to training, you get a real feel for the game so it’s good for everyone to come on, including myself, to get a bit of game time and confidence and hopefully take that into training next week and onto Leicester as well.”