Returning to Aviva Premiership rugby for the first time in three weeks, Saints put together a mammoth performance against local rivals Leicester Tigers only for their visitors to snatch a last minute win with two Owen Williams penalties at the death.
Nafi Tuitavake said that Saints felt that they were playing a good brand of rugby and we still very much in the game until those dying moments.
“Towards the end, I thought things were going our way,” Tuitavake told SaintsTV after yesterday’s game.
“And I thought we could close it out and hold them off but that's the game of rugby but we just fell short at the end.
“The set piece was an issue but we've got a week off now to fix where we went wrong and finish strong with the last four games.
“There's nothing we can do now, it's gone and done.
“We had a few hurt boys in the changing room. It meant quite a lot just because of the rivalry between Leicester and Northampton Saints and I really feel for them, being new to the team.
“There are hurt boys in there. And we had Lee Dickson hit 250 games for Saints, it would have been nice to bring it home for him.”
Tuitavake said that while the final result did not come for Saints, the team was pleased with their game in the first half but saying that ultimately it was Leicester’s finish that cost them the win.
“We went into the game with the mentality to play quick, hit the front line and try to outrun the other team. We did that and it gave us the results that we wanted.
“It was unlucky to not finish with the try for Daisy but that's the fine line of rugby. But we bounced back in the second half.
“We didn't quite play our game and the fast tempo we wanted but it was there. Leicester just finished off with the penalties and finished strong.”
Now having a week of while the European Champions Cup quarter finals take place, Tuitavake says that the drop in momentum is frustrating but that it will give the whole squad a chance to recover for when they travel to Wasps in two weeks time.
“It would have been nice to come straight back in and focus on the next team and get on but I guess it's nice though.
“We had some international boys that have had it full on so it'll be good for them so they can freshen up.
“And for all the boys to freshen up and come back the following week ready to rumble against Wasps.”