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Myler still dreaming of top four with Northampton Saints

Stephen Myler

He has been the cornerstone of Northampton’s back-line for more than a decade and fly-half Stephen Myler insists he will need every ounce of that experience to help the Saints finish in this season’s Aviva Premiership Rugby top-four.

Since arriving from Salford City Reds in 2006, Myler has gone on to make more than 300 appearances for Northampton, amassing more than 2,500 points for the club in the process.

Myler admits himself that Northampton’s Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign has not gone to script so far this season, ‘consistency’ has been an issue, with the Saints presently sitting in eighth position in the table and 12 points back from fourth-placed Bath.

There is no doubt Northampton face a huge challenge in the final five weeks of the season, with Leicester Tigers, Wasps, Saracens, Exeter Chiefs and Harlequins all lying in wait.

He is convinced Northampton can still enjoy a spectacular end to this season’s Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign but has warned the hard work starts now.

“Aviva Premiership Rugby is our bread and butter, but it hasn’t gone as we would have liked so far,” said Myler.

“We’re still in a decent position in that we can challenge for the top four and the nature of the league means the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful season is pretty slim.

“A result here or there can really elevate you, so hopefully we can continue to play good rugby and get ourselves up there where we believe we can be when we play well.

“The teams that deal with the expectation and perform most consistently will be the ones at the top come the end of the season, and we aspire to be one of those teams.

“I listen to what the players and coaches want from me, and more importantly if you can do your job and do what is asked for you then you’re going to contribute to hopefully be a successful team.

“That mind set of putting the team first has been synonymous with what Jim Mallinder has been about, and that’s what I’ve been about anyway, so there’s a good fit there and it’s something which the team will hopefully be built on in years to come.”

Stephen Myler was speaking at the launch of this year’s Aviva #DriveSafer campaign alongside team-mates Harry Mallinder and Ben Foden.

As part of the campaign, Aviva and all 12 Premiership Rugby clubs are highlighting the dangers of dangerous driving caused by distractions, with a particular focus on the use of mobile phones.

And Myler explained he was proud to play his part in trying to help improve safety on the roads.

“Safe driving is something that has perhaps been overlooked in the past, particularly with the use of mobile phones,” said Myler.

“I’ve seen people using their phone in the car and you’ve heard stories about the accidents they have caused and there’s not really any excuse for it – safety is the most important thing.

“If I can be a part of helping that then I definitely want to be involved.”

In the absence of international team-mates George North, Dylan Hartley, Courtney Lawes and Tom Wood during the RBS 6 Nations; Myler has been impressed by the leadership and drive shown by his close friend and Saints skipper Christian Day.

He added: “Christian Day is a really good friend of mine, he’s been a massive part of what the team’s been about for nine years and I’ve seen him grow into the role he has with the club.

“He’s well-respected, very astute and a bright player and perhaps goes under the radar for most of the time outside of the club, but the lads and the coaches certainly know the value he has on our team.

“I’m immensely proud of him as a friend, he’s a fantastic player and a great bloke and I’m sure his influence on this team will continue for some time to come.”

Northampton Saints are proud to support Aviva, title sponsor of Premiership Rugby, on their #DriveSafer campaign and help raise awareness of dangerous driving. Download the Aviva Drive app to see how safe your driving is at www.aviva.co.uk/car-insurance/drive 

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