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SAINTS 23 LEICESTER 19 Waller hails calmness and character

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

The Saints had begun the game well, looking threatening with a couple of early attacks. But Dylan Hartley was red carded just before the end of the opening quarter, and with Leicester scoring with a penalty try almost immediately it looked like it would be a long afternoon at the office for the hosts.

However Stephen Myler landed two first half penalties, and when Waller finished off an excellent team try early in the second half it sparked a memorable 40 minutes of action.

And Waller said that there was no point in letting the captain’s sending off get under the skin, instead concentrating on what was to come.

“You don’t dwell on it,” he said. “You just focus on the next job, obviously we spoke about what we needed to do and a few technical adjustments. There’s nothing you can do about it, so you just move on.”

Waller’s try put Saints in front for the first time, and as the half wore on the hosts would go on to dominate territory and possession statistics, often doubling Leicester’s own totals.

Nevertheless, despite Ben Foden also going over the whitewash, the Tigers would not be shaken loose. Vereniki Goneva scored twice, and with his second try coming less than 10 minutes from time it looked as though Saints would be sucker-punched out of the win.

But they kept their nerve, sending a late penalty to the corner to set up a position from which Jamie Elliott would bring the house down.

“It showed a lot of character from the boys from 1 to 23,” Waller added. “It wasn’t ideal going down to 14 men, but the boys showed the character and the fitness and the strength from the work we do back stage. And the way we came back, tries for, tries against, I’m proud of how we played.

“We’ll enjoy this win, but come Monday after the review we’ve got to focus on the next thing, which is Quins away.”

You can re-live the action as it happened at www.saintslive.co.uk

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