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Northampton 24-6 Bath: Ribbans stars as Saints win

by 15/09/2017 20:00:00 0 comments 1 Views
  • Northampton Saints were in inspired form to beat Bath in a four-try victory 
  • Lock David Ribbans scored a brace of tries to steer his side to an impressive win 
  • George North crossed the line late on to ensure bonus points to the Saints 
  • Bath had started the season well with good wins over Leicester and Saracens  

By Rory Keane For The Daily Mail

Published: 17:10 EDT, 15 September 2017 | Updated: 20:00 EDT, 15 September 2017

Northampton boss Jim Mallinder hailed the impact of Courtney Lawes after the England and Lions lock led his side to an emphatic victory over Bath.

In the absence of skipper Dylan Hartley, who sat out the game due to a hand injury, Lawes was entrusted to lead out the Saints on their home turf.

The 28-year-old second rower set the tone early as he barged over in the corner for the first try of the evening after just four minutes. 

David Ribbans (centre) scored a brace of tries as impressive Northampton defeat Bath 24-6
David Ribbans (centre) scored a brace of tries as impressive Northampton defeat Bath 24-6

David Ribbans (centre) scored a brace of tries as impressive Northampton defeat Bath 24-6

‘Courtney has been really good for us,’ said Mallinder.

‘He leads by example. He doesn’t say too much but what he does say is very relevant and precise.

‘Every single impact he does something positive, whether that’s his carries or his defence. He put in a number of massive hits today.’

Mallinder’s men shipped 55 points in an opening day demolition at the hands of Saracens but have steadied the ship in recent weeks with a hard-fought win against Leicester followed by this thumping bonus point victory under the lights of Franklin’s Gardens.

‘You remember what people say,’ said the Saints boss.

‘It hurts. It really hurts and it hurts the team. We needed a reaction and we got that last week and we’ve shown that we need to continue in that vein.’ 

George North dives over to score Northampton's fourth try of the night against Bath 
George North dives over to score Northampton's fourth try of the night against Bath 

George North dives over to score Northampton's fourth try of the night against Bath 

MATCH FACTS:

Bath: Anthony Watson; Semesa Rokoduguni, Jonathan Joseph, Ben Tapuai (Max Clark 58), Matt Banahan,; Rhys Priestland, Kahn Fotuali’i (Darren Allinson 30 HIA); Beno Obano (Nick Auterac 54), Tom Dunn (Jack Walker 54), Anthony Perenise (Scott Andrews 68), Charlie Ewels (James Phillips, 58), Elliott Stooke (Ewels 61); Matt Garvey (c) (Paul Grant 31), Sam Underhill, Taulupe Faletau

Replacements: Freddie Burns

Northampton: Ahsee Tuala (Ben Foden 67), George North, Rob Horne, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Harry Mallinder, 9 Nic Groom (Cobus Reinach 73), Alex Waller (Campese Ma’afu), Mikey Haywood, , Paul Hill (Kieran Brookes, 53), Michael Paterson, David Ribbans, Courtney Lawes (c), Jamie Gibson (67), Teimana Harrison (Lewis Ludlam 67)

Replacements: Reece Marshall, James Grayson

Referee: Tom Foley 

Young lock David Ribbans, who signed from the Stormers in January, made an impressive contribution to Northampton’s victory with a brace of tries on either side of half-time.

The 21-year-old South African already looks a shrewd signing.

‘I just love the way he likes belting people in defence,’ Malliinder observed.

‘He carries the ball so hard in attack… he doesn’t ever want to be tackled. He refuses to go to deck and that’s really refreshing to see.’

Lawes’ early try and Ribbans’ brace saw the Saints move into a 17-6 lead with just under half an hour remaining. Two first-half penalties from Rhys Priestland was all Bath could register on a tough night for the visitors. A late George North try completed the rout. 

Bath had made an impressive start to the season but could do very little to stop the Saints 
Bath had made an impressive start to the season but could do very little to stop the Saints 

Bath had made an impressive start to the season but could do very little to stop the Saints 

The performance of Sam Underhill on debut was a rare shining light for Todd Blackadder’s side. The talented openside making 23 tackles before being forced off with a head injury in the 67th minute.

Blackadder sought to allay fears over England star Anthony Watson who received treatment for a leg injury midway through the first half.

‘He seemed to be ok. It was good that he got through the game.’

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