James Fish says that he might be the player with the tries but the rest of the pack deserves credit for giving him his first five-pointers in black, green and gold.
Fish was a second half replacement in the Anglo-Welsh Cup win over the Scarlets that saw the Saints sign off their pool campaign in style.
The hooker was the beneficiary of two strong drives as the pack kept it tight as the weather came in during the second half, and Fish told SaintsTV why he won’t forget these tries in a hurry.
“I haven’t scored since school!” he said. “It was nice to get over the line and for us to stick together as a unit. They weren’t individual tries but it’s great to get over the line and play some first team rugby.
“I’ve been out on loan to get some game time, getting my head down and working hard. Opportunities will come and then it’s about taking your chance.”
In all the Saints scored eight tries, Ben Foden leading the way with two and Harry Mallinder, Ken Pisi, Mikey Haywood and Jamie Gibson also joining Fish in crossing the whitewash.
Last week’s loss at Leicester meant that the Saints came into the Round 4 clash knowing that a win was the only way to keep semi-final hopes alive, even if the actual qualification is still reliant on the Tigers beating Saracens on Sunday.
“We’re relying on other results, but we had a job to get done and get that bonus point,” Fish added. “We’ve done that, stuck together as a team and ground the result out.”
The Friday night clash with the Scarlets was the third game in a row that the 20-year-old Senior Academy forward has tasted first team rugby, with his appearances this season including the Champions Cup trips to Leinster and Montpellier, and he added that he is soaking up everything that the experiences have offered along the way.
“They might not have been the results that we’d have wanted but it’s been great to get the experience in the first team environment,” he commented. “It’s a different level of intensity and physicality when you’re playing against the likes of Nadolo for Montpellier. You don’t see that when you’re out on loan!”
Tickets are now on sale for the Saints' upcoming matches against Worcester (Feb 25th), Leicester (March 25th) and Saracens (April 16th). Book now and make your voice count at www.northamptonsaints.co.uk/buytickets.