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Mallinder: Win sets up competitive end to season

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

Saints powered past the Exiles with six tries to extend their Aviva Premiership Rugby winning run to three matches, and with just nine points separating Harlequins in second place and London Wasps in sixth and just five matches to play, Mallinder was delighted to see his side get a maximum haul at a sunny Franklin's Gardens.

"To get a bonus point win is great," he said in the post-match press conference. "London Irish have been playing well recently and are spirited side.

"We got our balance right. The forwards were good in the scrum and maul but we did well out wide too.

"We were pleased to have got the try at end of the first half and we knew what we needed to do after the break. And I thought we played well in first 20 minutes of second half. We scored tries and Irish didn't get out of their half."

Jamie Elliott led the way for the second week running, his hat trick making it five tries in just two matches. Mallinder praised the performance of both the 20-year-old Saints Academy graduate and his counterpart on the other wing, James Wilson.

"Both James and Jamie did really well on the wings," he commented. "What's particularly pleasing is that Jamie came through the Academy; he's a local lad and that's good for the club going forward."

The Saints now have a short break before the Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign resumes with a trip to London Wasps on March 23rd, followed seven days later by the East Midlands derby. And now that Saints have got themselves back into the play-off positions the boss wants them to stay there.

"It's essential for us to be in top four," Mallinder added. "We've had ups and downs but we're in a decent position. The next two games are important, but we've got a bit of a break now and can sharpen our focus. We've only got one target now."

Tickets are now on general sale for both the trip to London Wasps (Saturday, March 23rd) and the home game against Leicester Tigers (Saturday, March 30th), along with England Under-20s' Six Nations match with Italy, being played at Franklin's Gardens on Friday, March 8th.

For more information about all these matches and to book online CLICK HERE and follow the straightforward instructions!