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NEWS: Teams Up: Aviva Premiership Round 14 Bath v Saints


By Happywifehappylife
February 8 2018

The team is up as Saints take on Quins at The Rec kick off 7.45pm Friday 9th February 2018

Tom Wood, Rob Horne, Ben Foden and Campese Ma’afu all return to Northampton Saints’ starting line-up to take on Bath Rugby at the Rec on Friday evening.

The visitors head back into Aviva Premiership action full of confidence after four wins in their last five matches in all competitions, booking themselves a spot in the Anglo-Welsh Cup semi-finals last week. It was a last-gasp triumph against Gloucester Rugby in their most recent Aviva Premiership outing that kick-started that run of form, and Saints will be hoping to continue that in Bath where they boast a superb recent record – they have lost just once on their last seven visits to the Rec.

Technical coaching consultant Alan Gaffney and interim head coach Alan Dickens have made four changes from the side that notched up five tries against Harlequins last time out. Two of those come in the back-line with Rob Horne coming back into the fray at outside centre after a couple of weeks of rest, while Ben Foden steps back onto the wing to bring an experienced head to what will be a hostile atmosphere under the floodlights of the Rec. Ken Pisi took his 2018 try tally to five in five matches last time out and keeps his place on the other wing, while the half-back axis of Piers Francis and Cobus Reinach is also unchanged.

There is one change in the front row, with loosehead Campese Ma’afu coming in to join Mikey Haywood and Kieran Brookes, and Tom Wood is the only change at the back of the scrum – the 31-year-old will wear the No.6 jersey for Saints. David Ribbans (who was the unlikely two-try hero when Saints beat Bath back in September), Francois van Wyk and Nafi Tuitavake all switch to the bench, where there is also room for Harry Mallinder who was released by England earlier in the week.

SAINTS 15 Ahsee Tuala 14 Ken Pisi 13 Rob Horne 12 Tom Stephenson 11 Ben Foden 10 Piers Francis 9 Cobus Reinach 1 Campese Ma’afu 2 Mikey Haywood 3 Kieran Brookes 4 Api Ratuniyarawa 5 Christian Day (capt) 6 Tom Wood 7 Jamie Gibson 8 Teimana Harrison Replacements: 16 Reece Marshall 17 Francois van Wyk 18 Jamal Ford-Robinson 19 David Ribbans 20 Ben Nutley 21 Nic Groom 22 Harry Mallinder 23 Nafi Tuitavake

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Marching On
NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Marching On (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:50
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MESSAGES->author
Teams up 4 changes
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 11:55
BATH RUGBY V SAINTS TEAM NEWS
Aviva Premiership Rugby, Round 14
The Recreation Ground
Friday 9th February, 2018
Kick-off: 7.45pm
SAINTS
15 Ahsee Tuala
14 Ken Pisi
13 Rob Horne
12 Tom Stephenson
11 Ben Foden
10 Piers Francis
9 Cobus Reinach
1 Campese Ma’afu
2 Mikey Haywood
3 Kieran Brookes
4 Api Ratuniyarawa
5 Christian Day (capt)
6 Tom Wood
7 Jamie Gibson
8 Teimana Harrison
Replacements:
16 Reece Marshall
17 Francois van Wyk
18 Jamal Ford-Robinson
19 David Ribbans
20 Ben Nutley
21 Nic Groom
22 Harry Mallinder
23 Nafi Tuitavake


[www.northamptonsaints.co.uk]

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
ElySaint
Re: Teams up 4 changes
ElySaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 11:58
Looks good to me. Go at 'em lads.

Wonder if Brussow is injured, I heard he'd be a nailed on starter.*



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:02:08:11:59:06 by ElySaint.

 
herbie85
Re: Teams up 4 changes
herbie85 (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:05
Ribbans and tuitavake can probably consider themselves unlucky. Strong side on paper however

 
Saint Stokey
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Saint Stokey (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:15
Ribbans, Nutley, Nafi and Harry offer a fair bit of positional cover.

Surprised not to see Brussow. Perhaps he's a nailed on Wandies or AW cup player since he was a Jim signing.*

What has Ludlam done wrong to be dropped from the squad?

 
Aylesbury Saint
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Aylesbury Saint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:17
Quote:
Saint Stokey
What has Ludlam done wrong to be dropped from the squad?

Have to agree that he has looked good when playing, but which player would you drop to get him in?

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:17
And the Bath line up.
A couple of familiar faces.
Bath Rugby team to face Northampton Saints

15. James Wilson

14. Matt Banahan

13. Will Hurrell

12. Ben Tapuai

11. Aled Brew

10. Freddie Burns

9. Kahn Fotuali’i

1. Lucas Noguera

2. Tom Dunn

3. Max Lahiff

4. Elliott Stooke

5. Charlie Ewels

6. Matt Garvey (c)

7. Paul Grant

8. James Phillips

Replacements

16. Ross Batty

17. Nick Auterac

18. Henry Thomas

19. Luke Charteris

20. Josh Bayliss

21. Chris Cook

22. Josh Lewis

23. Darren Atkins

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Saint Stokey
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Saint Stokey (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:21
It'll be interesting to see how Wilson does. Always rated the guy but time is not on his side.

Great eye for the game and good hands but just hope that he's lost a few yards in pace

 
Walks11
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Walks11 (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:21
odd no Collins or Broussow in squad. perhaps Harry and Ben N offer more versatility in bench options

 
Nath-coys
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Nath-coys (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:27
Think this game will be a real showing of how much improvement there has been.

Bath had a lot of injury problems but that still looks a pretty decent team.

Team we have selected will have too be at there best too get a result at the Rec I feel.

COYS!!

 
Saint Stokey
Re: Teams up 4 changes
Saint Stokey (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 12:40
my only concern is the fitness of our second rows.

Both a quality players but Api doesn't tend to last 80 minutes and when Daisy has, by the end of the game he looks thoroughly broken.

Hopefully this is just a case of giving everything and "leaving nothing on the pitch" but i think we need to be looking at a younger and fitter option. I appreciate that Ribbans could fill the role but i don't see him as the lineout specialist that we get with Daisy. I guess this is something that can be learned or coached.

Courtney and Ribbans would be my future pairing but with Courts seeming to play most of his games at 6 now, its another position that needs looking at.

 
fair_weather_fan
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
fair_weather_fan (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 13:03
I can see James Wilson being tested by a few high balls as it was a weakness.

 
saintsfella
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
saintsfella (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 13:03
The Bath team seems huge! Reckon they will be in it to do us over on the physical front. Shame not to see Brüssow he would relish big opposition ball carriers lumbering around him.

 
Scrummy
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Scrummy (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 13:09
Despite the players missing that still looks a strong Bath team and bench.

 
tboullem
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Mobbs (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 14:15
Collins looked fairly fit to me when I saw the backs doing sprints in front of the Tetleys on tuesday. That being said Fodes and Ken are playing well.

 
HungryLikeTheWolf
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
HungryLikeTheWolf (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 14:23
Brussow has only just come back from injury.... he walks into our team, no doubt. Starting him off away at Bath on a heavy pitch after a groing injury against a heavy pack would not have been smart.


Rather he comes off the bench vs Irish, at home on a hard pitch, for a good 30 minutes. Then he is another week back into fitness and at the races.



As above Bath have a very heavy pack, I worry about 5 metre lineouts, scrums etc.... but hopeful elsewhere. Think we can nick it.

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: Teams up 4 changes
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 14:23
Quote:
Saint Stokey

What has Ludlam done wrong to be dropped from the squad?

Very good question - one of the best defensive players we have and needs game time to develop into the player he has the potential to be.

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: Teams up 4 changes
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 15:00
Quote:
Aylesbury Saint
Quote:
Saint Stokey
What has Ludlam done wrong to be dropped from the squad?

Have to agree that he has looked good when playing, but which player would you drop to get him in?

I can think of two positions in that squad that I would think Ludlam is the better long term option (so develop him!) and like for like offers pretty much as good as today.

There were several premiership clubs in for him this year and he chose to extend his contract by 1 year only.

In the words of Alan Gaffney on last week's Saints show - if you don't start playing these players they are going to leave.

 
tedge
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
tedge (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 15:05
Fine words until league matches remind the coaches about the threat of relegation

 
SaintsAsh
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
SaintsAsh (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 15:32
Quote:
tedge
Fine words until league matches remind the coaches about the threat of relegation

They are fine words, trouble is, we have been playing badly and the 1st team have a new coaches input to implement. So, the first team needs time together to implement the plan, once the team are doing this we can then realistically add some youngsters into it. IMHO.

 
ch saint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
ch saint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 15:46
I don't see relegation as an issue, never have, but it's still difficult to integrate youngsters when the team is trying to recover some consistency.
Jim's problem was he had three seasons in succession where we started badly, so was always searching for recovery.
The best situation is to blood youngsters when we are having a winning streak, but they also have a responsibility to demonstrate they are capable. Not easy.

 
John Rickerd
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
John Rickerd (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 16:02
Feel sorry for Groom, can see why Reinach starts, but all round I think Groom is the better player.

 
TheGent
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
TheGent (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 16:50
Quote:
John Rickerd
Feel sorry for Groom, can see why Reinach starts, but all round I think Groom is the better player.

I get a definite dicko feeling about groom. Not the most athletic but gets the ball away quickly hell or high water and allows us to play our quick ball attack.

Reinach is much more like Kahn, more athletically gifted but slower to get the ball away (notice he takes a split second delay to wind his pass before giving it) but can break from anywhere and has the pace to finish.

From the coaches pov it's horses for courses depending on opposition but personally I would always go for quick ball.

Now if boyd can get reinach to speed up his delivery we would have the best scrum half in the prem imo with Groom as a solid but potentially crucial deputy to up the tempo at 60 mins a la care for England.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:02:08:16:51:17 by TheGent.

 
Whiston Saint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Whiston Saint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 17:08
Quote:
tedge
Fine words until league matches remind the coaches about the threat of relegation

We are not under any threat of relegation.

No surprise if we end up top 8 or better.

 
HungryLikeTheWolf
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
HungryLikeTheWolf (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 17:22
Instead of relegation I believe more likely is Gaffer trying to get us 6th. He only has this small window to make a real noise...

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 17:39
Quote:
HungryLikeTheWolf
Instead of relegation I believe more likely is Gaffer trying to get us 6th. He only has this small window to make a real noise...

There’s always a reason - relegation, top 6, top 4, building confidence, can’t change s winning team, only competition we can win, new coach - blah blah blah

As someone with a particular interest in developing young players, I’m sick of the rhetoric!

 
HungryLikeTheWolf
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
HungryLikeTheWolf (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 17:46
I don’t disagree with that and at the start of the season I said I was excited to see Lewis this year...

The problem is we have a very fatty squad. Multiple good players in lots of positions instead of one excellent player with a good young guy with potential below and some squad players sprinkled in.


It will be tough for young guys until that changes

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 18:05
Quote:
HungryLikeTheWolf
I don’t disagree with that and at the start of the season I said I was excited to see Lewis this year...
The problem is we have a very fatty squad. Multiple good players in lots of positions instead of one excellent player with a good young guy with potential below and some squad players sprinkled in.


It will be tough for young guys until that changes

I agree but in Lewis case, I think you’d get back very little ‘small change’ swapping him out for Woody (on current age and form).

This is a lad who left the England u20 side as the player of the tournament in 2015, was immediately placed under the mentorship of Richard Hill by the RFU - he’s our Itoje, Underhill, Ewels etc. But weve done nothing to develop him like those players have been developed.

I haven’t seen him do too much wrong when he’s played.

It just need a little less fear from some of the coaches

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 18:27
Remember that Lewis had Glandular fever, just after the first few games of the season. That can suddenly drain you of energy for many months later. Maybe that was a consideration?

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Lamont4Saints
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Lamont4Saints (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 18:40
Lewis is playing way better than wood right now. He doesn’t need to ‘deveolp’ He needs to be playing 1st team rugby.

Wood on the other hand has offered very little for a long time now. Was once my favourite player but he doesn’t add enough anymore.

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 18:53
Quote:
Lamont4Saints
Lewis is playing way better than wood right now. He doesn’t need to ‘deveolp’ He needs to be playing 1st team rugby.
Wood on the other hand has offered very little for a long time now. Was once my favourite player but he doesn’t add enough anymore.

+1 totally agree - my point about development for Lewis is about him reaching his full potential. I concur he is very much ready for first team rugby.

 
Walks11
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Walks11 (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 19:03
Wood was very good in his last outing. Would have agreed prior to that game. Perhaps an old experienced head rather than a young tyro based on opposition and away from home

We also don’t have the luxury of seeing what’s going on mid week

 
Deesaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Deesaint (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 20:54
Prior to the clammer for Lewis to play wasn’t there a crescendo demanding Paublo play then before that was it ........,.. and before that .......... and before that Wilson

Either Mr Gafney knows what he is doing or he doesn’t - results will tell

I so hope the boys can pull it off on Friday COYS
However is playing:-)

 
John Rickerd
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
John Rickerd (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 22:11
Just needs to watch his penalty count.

 
Bernie's Dad
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Bernie's Dad (IP Logged)
08/02/2018 23:11
Quote:
John Rickerd
Feel sorry for Groom, can see why Reinach starts, but all round I think Groom is the better player.

I think these two have swapped in the pecking order for selection between Jim and Alan’s tenures... but we’re lucky to have them both in the 22!

 
protestbeat
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
protestbeat (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 07:48
Quote:
SuffolkSaint
Quote:
HungryLikeTheWolf
Instead of relegation I believe more likely is Gaffer trying to get us 6th. He only has this small window to make a real noise...

There’s always a reason - relegation, top 6, top 4, building confidence, can’t change s winning team, only competition we can win, new coach - blah blah blah

As someone with a particular interest in developing young players, I’m sick of the rhetoric!

This!

It’s basically been this way thru the Jim era and certianly the last 5 years. Theres always a reason why we don’t pick the youngster. Through the good times we managed to spin all the plates, drip feeding our prospects with the tiniest sprinking of genuine gametime (prem/euro) but always with the added alure of winning trophies and being part of something special.

I think we’re just starting to see a trend towards young players leaving us to get game time (Ethan/ Danny Hobbs/ Matti Williams /Hooley/ Packman) You can argue that these players wouldn’t have made a huge impact in our 1st team but I think the point is more that they were never given the chance.

E.g. How long have we been searching for a backup for Myler (Joel Hodgeson anyone!?)
E.g How many backrow injuries/new signings/ second rows played at 6 will it take before we actually give Nutley or Ludlam a chance (Love the Itoje analagy btw).
E.g. Is Tom Collins ever going to be trusted, after that fantastic start to the season, rave reviews for pundits, a genuine game breaking threat; A few bad games and he’s nowhere to be seen again.
E.g Do we need 2 scrums halves of the quality of Groom and Reinarch at the expense of Mitchell sitting with the reserves.

Sorry for the broken record post but some of the responses on here just seem to exemplify this culture problem at our club!

smiling smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:02:09:07:51:29 by protestbeat.

 
MESSAGES->author
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 08:45
Re Tom
One of his weaker aspects is tackling? He would be up against banners so could be seen. As a weak link?
Maybe that it is a straight choice between Tom and ken and ken seen as the better skill set for this game?

http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Hantsaintsrus4
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Hantsaintsrus4 (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 09:30
At a Bath fans/coaches forum,when Sam Burgess was with them, it was asked why they never used him on a 'crash ball' off the scrum. The coaches said they didn't use the scrum as an attacking platform but rather as a means of getting penalties to kick for points or position.
This is still the case, the last time I looked they had gained twice as many penalties from the scrum as any other side.It makes for boring watching, collapsed scrums, resets and huge cheers from the fans when they get a penalty. Sitting outside in the rain and cold without being able to see clearly is no fun. Lovely city, but poor stadium.
So for the first time in ten years we will watch it in the local pub.
COYS!

 
white lion
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
white lion (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 15:53
It will be pleasing to see James Wilson again and I hope he has a good game (though not too good). The decision to let him go was imo quite wrong and reeks of ageism!

 
Hantsaintsrus4
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
Hantsaintsrus4 (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 20:41
1st half has showed me to be completely wrong about the scrums! No change there then

 
SuffolkSaint
Re: NEWS: Teams Up: Bath v Saints
SuffolkSaint (IP Logged)
09/02/2018 22:36
Quote:
There’s always a reason - relegation, top 6, top 4, building confidence, can’t change s winning team, only competition we can win, new coach - blah blah blah

Let me add “give them a chance to put right for last week” to the list!

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