Franklin’s Gardens will host the Aviva Premiership’s early pace-setters at 3:15pm, and with the home side sitting in third place whoever wins will have an early boost to their league campaign.
Saints have been front runners in both their wins against Gloucester and Newcastle this season, but last term had to come from behind in all three of their games against Bath. Two of those were wins, the third a draw, and Ma’afu says that Mike Ford’s team deserves respect.
“They were good last season,” he said. “They’ve got a good set piece and you know they have really strong backs. All across the park they compete really well. They're a team that are on the up and we’ll have a lot of run ins with them in the future as well as this weekend.
“We really had to step up our game across the park when we played against them last year. That’s behind us now though; we’re both different teams, everyone is better and we will have to bring our ‘A’ game to make sure we get a win.”
You can hear the full interview with Salesi – including his opinion on what it was like to play on Newcastle’s artificial pitch last Sunday – right now on the Saints’ official podcast, available for FREE on any device on SoundCloud by CLICKING HERE
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