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Exeter’s Chiefs rule the roost in Northampton

Things just keep getting better for the Exeter Chiefs at the moment and after claiming a first-ever Aviva Premiership Rugby win at Northampton they now sit second in the table.

And according to Opta statistics for Aviva Premiership Rugby, Don Armand made more tackles (20/20) and won more turnovers (3) than any other player in the league last weekend as Rob Baxter’s side ended a six-game losing streak against the Saints.

And Armand was not the only stand-out Chief on Friday night at Franklin’s Gardens, Thomas Waldrom scored his second try double of the season in the victory while also completing 16 tackles, good enough for second on the overall list behind Armand.

Damien Welch also impressed in claiming a league-high seven lineouts during the clash but there were some impressive Saints showings in defeat.

No-one made more metres with ball in hand that Ben Foden (132) from 18 carries, beaten only by Phil Dowson in terms of carries who managed 20 for the table toppers while centre Tom Stephenson beat six defenders.

Also on Friday night, Harlequins came from behind to claim a first victory at Kingsholm since 1999 and it was a mixture of youth and experience that made all the difference.

Veteran No.8 Nick Easter claimed two turnovers on the night while youngster Ollie Lindsay-Hague on the wing made three clean breaks.

Unsurprisingly, after their 71-7 trouncing of London Welsh, a lot of Wasps players find themselves high up in the attacking stats from the weekend.

Rob Miller (131m), Christian Wade (112m) and Alex Lozowski (108m) are all in the top four for metres made with ball in hand while Nathan Hughes made three clean breaks.

Bath Rugby returned to winning ways in the league with victory at the Rec against Newcastle Falcons, Jonathan Joseph running in his sixth try of the league season to join Waldrom and Wade at the top of the charts.

Elsewhere Owen Williams held his nerve from the kicking tee to see Leicester Tigers earn a draw against Saracens and with 15 kicks from hand the Welsh fly-half perfectly controlled the game in miserable conditions.
 
Selected round seven statistics from Opta:

Tackles
Don Armand (Exeter Chiefs) 20
Thomas Waldrom (Exeter Chiefs) 16
Peter Browne (London Welsh) 15

Carries
Phil Dowson (Northampton Saints) 20
Ben Foden (Northampton Saints) 18
James Wilson (Northampton Saints) 15

Metres made
Ben Foden (Northampton Saints) 132
Rob Miller (Wasps) 131
Christian Wade (Wasps) 112

Defenders beaten
Tom Stephenson (Northampton Saints) 6
Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints) 5
Rob Miller (Wasps) 5

Offloads 
Ben White (Exeter Chiefs) 3
Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby) 3
Opeti Fonua (London Welsh) 3

Breaks 
Nathan Hughes (Wasps 3)
Ollie Lindsay-Hague (Harlequins) 3
Samu Manoa (Northampton Saints) 3
Rob Miller (Wasps) 3
Christian Wade (Wasps) 3

Lineouts won
Damian Welch (Exeter Chiefs) 7
Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons) 7
Graham Kitchener (Leicester Tigers) 7

Kicks
Owen Williams (Leicester Tigers) 15
Will Chudley (Exeter Chiefs) 12
Danny Cipriani (Sale Sharks) 12

Turnovers Won 
Dom Armand (Exeter Chiefs) 3
Nick Easter (Harlequins) 2
Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs) 2
Jackson Wray (Saracens) 2

This Christmas, Premiership Rugby is offering fans a special gift with selected tickets for the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final 2015. Click here to find out about this limited offer.

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