Fixtures - Top Bar

Hill still upbeat about life at Northampton Saints

Northampton Saints are facing the prospect of finishing outside the top four for the first time since 2009, but prop Paul Hill insists doing so would not be a disaster.

Saints, Aviva Premiership Rugby champions in 2014, head into the penultimate round of action in sixth spot, seven points behind fourth-placed Leicester Tigers.

Victories over Bath Rugby and Gloucester Rugby, as well as a favourable set of results elsewhere, are required if the Saints are to have a semi-final to look forward to.

But, should they fall short, England international front row Hill expects them to quickly recover.

And, with a chance to ensure they are playing in the top tier of European rugby next term still an incentive, Hill expects a strong finish.

“We are in a difficult position and the lads are annoyed about that. But what’s done is done, we can’t change anything about the last game,” said the 21-year-old.

“There is not much point in us looking back on games and dwelling, it’s important to look forwards.

“Finishing in the top four is out of our hands now and all we can do is hope for the best. But I wouldn’t call that a disaster.

“We can still secure a top-six position and that has its own prize. As long as you can learn from your mistakes, that’s what is important.”

Conceivably Saints could run out in front of their own fans for the final time this season tomorrow.

Three of their 10 Aviva Premiership Rugby defeats have come at Franklin’s Gardens this season, including to rivals Leicester Tigers last time out.

But with ninth-placed Bath tomorrow’s challengers, Hill is confident his team can go out with a bang.

“It’s potentially our final match at Franklin’s Gardens this season and it will be important for the fans to see us win,” he added.

“Bath had a slow start winning three of their first 10, but they have turned things around.

“They have got a strong forward line and are always a massive threat.”

Latest News

Match Report: Wasps 35 Gloucester Rugby 22

Wasps utility back Jimmy Gopperth claimed 25 points including a hat-trick as his team restored a six-point advantage at the…

Match Report: Bristol Rugby 12 Bath Rugby 11

Gavin Henson kicked 12 points against former club Bath Rugby on his first Aviva Premiership Rugby start since October as…

Match Reaction: Exeter Chiefs 36 Newcastle Falcons 14

They may have gone above defending champions Saracens and into second place in the Aviva Premiership Rugby table, but Exeter…

Match Reaction: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall picked out back rower Joel Conlon as the stand-out player in his side’s 29-18…

Match Reaction: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Jim Mallinder backed his side to continue their push up the table after they moved into Aviva Premiership Rugby’s top…

Match Report: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Mikey Haywood scored two tries as Northampton Saints came from behind to down Worcester Warriors and move into Aviva Premiership Rugby's…

Match Report: Exeter Chiefs 36 Newcastle Falcons 14

Exeter Chiefs fought their way to a bonus point victory over Newcastle Falcons to move up to second in Aviva…

Match Report: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens recorded their first Aviva Premiership Rugby win since New Year’s Day with a 29-18 success over an in-form Sale…

Match Reaction: Harlequins 18 Leicester Tigers 27

Assistant coach Geordan Murphy tipped his cap to a steely second-half showing from the Leicester Tigers replacements, who changed the…

England Under-20 secure impressive bonus-point win over Italy

England secured their third bonus-point win of the 2017 Six Nations with an eight-try 46-0 victory over Italy at the…