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Mallinder: We're not beaten

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Jim Mallinder

Jim Mallinder

Jim Mallinder

Jim Mallinder insists Northampton's exit from the Aviva Premiership title race has invigorated their pursuit of the Heineken Cup.

Saints' quest for domestic honours ended with last weekend's play-off semi-final defeat by Leicester at Welford Road. But rather than dent their confidence ahead of Saturday's Heineken Cup showpiece against Leinster at Millennium Stadium, Mallinder insists the result has cleared the minds for one last do-or-die tilt at winning some silverware.

"We've put what happened against Leicester to bed," said the club's director of rugby.

"If we were in the Premiership final we'd have more than one thing on our mind.

"But we've now only got one thing on our mind and that's Saturday.

"We're in good shape. Without doubt it was a physical, intense battle against Leicester. Our defensive performance was outstanding.

"But we've got a fit squad and the lads are used to playing every week.

"Watching them train the last couple of days, you wouldn't think it's the end of the season or that they're tired.

"We're not staggering over the finishing line, instead we're refreshed and looking forward to the weekend."

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