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West hails ruthless Saints

Northampton Saints forwards coach Dorian West has praised his side's ruthless streak as they ran in six tries during a 38-15 win at Treviso.

Scores from Samu Manoa, Alex Waller, Ben Foden, Luther Burrell, George Pisi and a penalty try ensured maximum points for the Saints to keep the pressure on pool five rivals Racing Metro and Ospreys.

Jim Mallinder left England trio Courtney Lawes, Dylan Hartley and Tom Wood out of his starting 15 for the trip to Italy but the Aviva Premiership leaders had too much for the Pro12's bottom club.

Treviso had two men sent to the sin bin in the defeat but there was a fine performance from former Worcester and Wasps outside-half Joe Carlisle for the home side as he notched a 10-point haul.

Saints coach West said: "When you come to these places your forwards have got to be ruthless, you have to work hard and take the energy out of their defence.

"We knew it was going to be tough especially early on, they are a good side with some really players so it was never going to be easy.

"Racing had come here and left without a bonus point so we knew we would have to be at our best if we were going to get maximum points.

"We worked really hard in the first half, especially in the forwards, to take the legs out of their pack and that created some space later on in the game.

"That's exactly what we thought would happen and we have got to be pleased with our game plan."

Treviso started brightly and despite Manoa touching down for Saints' first try after just nine minutes the visitors found it difficult to break down their hosts in the opening half an hour.

But when Treviso lost lock Francesco Minto to a yellow card Saints took control of the contest.

West added: "The lads showed a good spirit and a good togetherness.

"Their defensive line was very strong and we struggled to break them down in the first 25 minutes because there were working hard for each other.

"It's never easy, you have to earn your victories but I thought we worked hard and their legs finally went.

"We are pretty pleased with what we have done."

Saints host Treviso at Franklin's Gardens next week and West is looking for more of the same from his side as they chase a place in the knock-out stages.

"It's easier when you play them twice in two weeks," added West.

"We've done our analysis on them and all we need to do now is look at what players they could have to come back into the team.

"We will continue to work hard, there's less to look at in terms of the opposition but won't take our foot off the gas."


From Belfast Telegraph