There were smiles all round for the Saints’ representatives in the Six Nations this weekend, with tries and championships across four matches.
On Friday night George North was the scoring machine as Wales emerged victorious from their clash with Ireland in Cardiff. The wing scored twice as the Welsh shrugged off their loss to Scotland in bringing their tournament record to two wins and two defeats from their four matches played.
There was another try for a Saint on Saturday lunchtime, too, as Louis Picamoles continued his impressive Six Nations with a score in France’s win over Italy.
But the best was saved until Saturday evening as first England’s senior team and then the Under-20s secured their respective Six Nations titles.
Wales’s win meant that England went into the 124th Calcutta Cup clash with Scotland knowing that they could secure the title on home turf. And they did so in style – Jonathan Joseph scoring the first of his three tries with just two minutes on the clock – and ran in seven tries to hit 60 points and set a record win for the fixture.
“We hit the field running,” England captain Dylan Hartley said. “We put the pressure on ourselves to start the game well, as we do every week, but it’s a powerful think when it goes to plan and we saw that today. I’m very proud of the team and the work they’ve put in.”
Courtney Lawes also started the game, with Tom Wood coming off the bench, but while England secured both the Six Nations title and tied New Zealand’s world record winning run for Tier 1 nations Hartley insisted that there was no resting on the laurels for his team, adding: “Until the tournament’s over I don’t think we’ve won the tournament.
“We’re obviously going to enjoy the moment but the focus is quickly going to shift to Ireland next week. It’s the next game and our most important game now. We don’t have a two-week turnaround like we did for the Scotland game so we’re going to have to be ready for it from the off.
“We’ve made improvements and have set the bar pretty high now. We’re going to have to hit those expectations next week.”
The final game of the weekend was at Franklin’s Gardens, where England Under-20 secured the bonus point win they needed to secure their own championship crown. Scrum-half Alex Mitchell came off the bench in the five-try-to-one victory over a dogged and determined Scotland, and with Wales seeing off Ireland in Colwyn Bay the reigning World Champions had smiles on their faces once again with one round of matches to spare.