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Northampton Saints director of rugby Chris Boyd was full of admiration for Wales star Dan Biggar after they produced a dominant Premiership victory over Newcastle Falcons on Saturday.
The Midlanders were at their fluent best as they recorded a 44-8 triumph at Kingston Park to very much keep themselves in play-off contention.
They moved above Exeter Chiefs into fifth position in the table and are just three points behind Gloucester, who take up the final place in the top-four.
Good all-round performance
“It was a good, solid, all-round performance today from the boys,” Boyd said.
“You come up on the coach and sometimes you get delayed so to come out and take control of the game from the start was good to see.
“It’s always nice when players return to a starting line-up or as part of a squad. It empowers them to come together and to see them gelling again.
“You can look across the team and you see the quality that we have in positions; Dan (Biggar) has kicked extremely well today and that kind of gives you the platform to play your own game. Tom (Collins) had another strong game for us as well.
“I am extremely pleased to have come here and taken five points; you’d like to take five points from every game, but you know that it isn’t always possible so to do that today is fantastic. We haven’t done that very often recently and even less so when we have come up here.”
Tom Collins, Courtnall Skosan, Sam Matavesi, George Furbank and Tom James all crossed for tries for Northampton, while George McGuigan burrowed over for Newcastle’s only score.
It was a miserable afternoon for the hosts and director of rugby Dean Richards says they must cut out the errors.
“It was a disappointing performance from us today, we didn’t do as we had been planning and what we had rehearsed in training,” Richards said.
“It’s important that we pick ourselves up now as we’ve had a couple of disappointing results in a row now and we need to get ourselves back on the right track and start picking up the wins again.
“Heading into the European break, it might give us a chance to forget about the last couple of league games and to turn our attention to Europe and make a push in that.
“However, I thought we were on top in those opening stages of the game. It shows our attacking intent and the way that we want to play when we turn down the opportunity to kick for goal and go for the corner in the early stages of games.
“The first try was somewhat against the run of play, and I think if we had held out a little longer it may have given us more confidence.”
Gloucester elated after first win at Saracens since 2008
Gloucester attack coach Alex King was delighted after his troops won at Saracens for the first time since November 2008, prevailing 25-24 on Saturday.
Since their last triumph at Saracens’ old ground Vicarage Road, the Cherry and Whites had lost 12 and drawn the other in 13 visits to their Premiership rivals with the last three games seeing the West Country side concede 144 points – including a 62-12 defeat.
However tries from Fraser Balmain, Jack Singleton and Lewis Ludlow saw them turn the tide with Adam Hastings adding two penalties and two conversions in the away victory.
“You’ve got to play smart rugby against a side as efficient as Saracens and our kicking game today was spot-on,” King said.
“The most pleasing part of the game was how we managed the sin-bin period. Going down to 13 men could have seen the game go completely away from us.
“Games will smack you in the face at various times but it’s how you respond to that is what matters and today was a really important win for us.”
The article Dan Biggar praised after Northampton’s dominant win appeared first on Planetrugby.com.