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Six Saints impress on international stage

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

Securing a spot in the Anglo-Welsh semi-finals wasn't everything that the Saints were up to this weekend. As the Six Nations got underway, here's our wrap up of all the international action for the men in Black, Green and Gold...

First up, England Under-20s kicked off their Six Nations campaign at the Stadio Enzo Bearzot with a trio of young Saints amongst their ranks. Toby Trinder and Fraser Dingwall both made their debuts at that level, while James Grayson earned his first start.

And it took the fly-half just minutes to score his first points in the white shirt, a tally he soon added to as he converted two of the side's four tries during the ten-point win in Italy.

Attention then turned to Colwyn Bay as Scotland Under-20s made the trip to face Wales, like their senior counterparts, in their Under-20s Six Nations opener.

With Saints’ youngster Devante Onojaife earning his first cap at the level at No.8, Scotland suffered a disappointing defeat, eventually falling 36-3.

Despite the result, the debut was a bright one for Onojaife, who ranked among the top four for both carries and metres made, as well successfully making all 18 tackles he attempted during the game.

Next came the turn of the senior teams with England’s NatWest 6 Nations title defence opening upin Rome – and like their junior counterparts the side got their campaign off to an impressive start.

Despite having almost equal possession and territory as their hosts, the reigning champions wasted no time getting their first points on the board, opening the scoring with less than three minutes on the clock.

Leading by example, Saints and England captain Dylan Hartley kept a clean sheet for lineout throw, nailing 11 from 11 during the game. Meanwhile Courtney Lawes, starting the game in England's back row, almost maintained a clean sheet, this time when it came to tackles, also nailing 11 from 11 in the match as England ran in seven tries against Italy.