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SAINTS 39 GLOUCESTER 13 Dowson loving career more than ever

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The flanker made his 200th Aviva Premiership appearance in the Round 16 win over Gloucester which took the Saints back to the top of the league before the LV= Cup semi-final break.

And he led by example, skippering the team in a five-try performance that downed the Cherry and Whites in front of a packed Franklin's Gardens.

It was certainly apt that Dowson's 200th appearance came against the same club that were the opponents 12-and-a-bit years ago. And he says that he has been getting some friendly banter from some of the younger players in the Saints squad.

"My debut was back in 2001 - Ben Nutley's told me that he was still studying for his GCSEs at that point!" Dowson told SaintsTV. "It does feel a long time ago; the days are long but the years are short and the time has flown by.

"I've enjoyed my career and loved it. But I've never loved it as much as I am at the moment. The support that I've received personally on Twitter and Facebook has been very touching and I've appreciated that. "

In just seven days time the Saints take on Saracens in the LV= Cup semi-finals. It is a battle against the Aviva Premiership's top two sides, and Dowson called on the Saints supporters to repeat their own performance in the stands.

"The crowd today were vociferous, got stuck in and hopefully they got a bit of reward at the end of the game," he added. "We'll need more of that again next week against a tough side that is one of the top teams in the country and in a semi-final, too."

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