Premiership: England outside back Tommy Freeman inks new Northampton Saints deal

·3-min read
 Credit: PA Images
Credit: PA Images

Northampton Saints have announced that England outside back Tommy Freeman has put pen to paper on a new long-term deal beyond the end of the 2022/23 campaign.

Freeman is one of the rising stars of the English game and made his Test debut during the Red Rose’s victory over the Wallabies in Brisbane last month.

Fine start to Saints career

The 21-year-old, who graduated from Saints‘ academy, has already scored 17 tries in 35 matches played for Northampton of which 14 came during 18 appearances in the 2021/22 season.

Freeman’s fine form was rewarded with Northampton‘s Young Player of the Season award and Saints’ new director of rugby Phil Dowson expects him to continue to shine at the club.

“Tommy is a bona fide freak of an athlete,” he told Northampton Saints’ official website. “He’s tall, big and fast, but he’s also ludicrously skilful as well, and those things combined add up to a special player.

“He’s still young and has a lot to learn in terms of his positioning and defending, but regardless of that he’s still good enough to be playing international rugby for England at the moment, and that speaks volumes.

“Tommy makes good decisions. He can see space and has the ability to beat a player or put the ball on his foot at the right time, or throws offloads and has the confidence to do it for his club or country.

“He’s a very chilled-out character which definitely helps with things like nerves. Tommy seems to me like one of those players who will rise to the level he’s playing at, no matter what you throw at him, so he’s certainly a huge talent and someone we’re delighted to have kept on board.”

Freeman first showed his class when he scored a try for Saints in a pre-season encounter against Leicester Tigers in 2019 and he made his senior debut in a Premiership Rugby Cup clash with Sale Sharks later that season.

He made his Premiership debut as a 19-year-old against Bath during the 2019/20 campaign and has solidified his place in Northampton’s senior team with several outstanding performances.

Freeman revealed that he is delighted to extend his stay at the Franklin’s Gardens-based club.

“I’m thrilled to recommit my future to Northampton and am incredibly grateful to the club’s coaches for everything they have done to help me to develop as a player over the last few seasons,” he said.

“Chris Boyd gave me the platform to break into the first team and I’m excited about what’s to come with Dows at the helm – this is an environment I really wanted to remain a part of and everyone in the squad is working hard for next season.

Enjoying Northampton’s style of play

“Competition in the back three at Saints is always really strong, so I’ve always just tried to focus on grabbing my opportunities with both hands, and I love the freedom we are given as a squad to express ourselves on the field.

“This was obviously an incredible summer for me. It was really exciting to earn my first two caps for England – but now I’m only looking forward at the season ahead, and making sure I keep producing my best form for the club.”

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