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Report | Derby delight for Tigers at Saints

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Leicester Tigers scored seven tries in a 55-26 away win over Northampton Saints on Saturday for a seventh victory of the season.

Tigers claimed four first-half tries to lead 27-0 before Saints got on board with a score in the final action of the half, but had to brave a period of momentum in the second half down to 13 men before pulling clear again for derby victory in Round 7 of the Gallagher Premiership season.

After an early penalty for George Ford at a sold-out at the cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens, Nemani Nadolo provided the opening try of the day and he added a second just 10 minutes later after Francois van Wyk dotted down for the first time as a Tigers player.

That put the visitors 20 points in front by the 22nd minute and Julián Montoya stretched that with a trademark score from a drive in the corner after Saints had been punished for indiscipline close to their own line.

Saints finally responded with a try on the stroke of half-time and they started to close the gap with two more tries in the third quarter to make the score 19-30 and also had advantage with Tigers collecting simultaneous yellow cards for Richard Wigglesworth and Jasper Wiese.

But a quick-thinking drop goal from Ford and a couple of penalties took the impetus out of the hosts and there were further tries for replacements Jack van Poortvliet (2) and Kini Murimurivalu before Saints claimed a point with their fourth score at the end.

Ford got the 247th East Midlands derby started in bright sunshine and he added the opening points of the day just four minutes into proceedings after Saints failed to make an efficient exit from their own territory and were then penalised in trying to recycle ball.

The opening try followed on 12 minutes with Jasper Wiese making the initial break with a powerful carry which had Saints forced back into their 22. Harry Potter also threatened in possession before Tigers played left to right and a long pass from Dan Kelly found Nadolo on the left touchline and there was no stopping the big wing from there.

Saints had already turned down a kick for goal when they were given an attacking when fly-half Dan Biggar missed a 15th minute penalty from a kickable position and just five minutes later, Tigers had a second try.

This time Kelly managed to get forward in the 22 and, when support arrived, prop van Wyk showed his strength in making the final push just to the right of the posts. Ford’s conversion made it 15-0.

The travelling support had only just calmed down when Nadolo grabbed his second score of the day moments later, latching on to ball after a spill by Alex Mitchell near halfway. The Fijian was clear on his own and, though he slipped just short of the line as he stepped in off his left foot, he managed to stretch out and score.

A further break by Wiese almost led to a fourth try as Tigers continued to punish errors by pinning Saints back in defence, but lock Api Ratuniyarawa made a superb tackle on Ford as the fly-half looked to break clear on the left with Nadolo again in support.

Tigers, though, stayed on the front foot through a series of penalties in the right-hand corner which led to a warning from referee Tom Foley and then the bonus-point try.

Eli Snyman had controlled lineout ball and hooker Montoya broke off the back of the maul to push over for the score and Ford’s immaculate conversion made it 27-0.

Saints, though, found a reply on the stroke of half-time with a series of attacking phases and, although Kelly produced a trysaving tackle on Rory Hutchinson almost on the tryline, the hosts retained ball long enough to find Skosan to score on the right touchline in the final action of the half.

Biggar missed his conversion kick and made way at half-time, with James Grayson on to kick off after the break.

Tigers lost Wigglesworth to a yellow card after high contact on a Saints player in defence in the opening minutes of the half and opposite number Mitchell instantly provided a try for Saints to the left of the posts.

In the build-up, referee Foley spotted a no-arms tackle by Wiese and the No8 also collected a yellow card before Grayson could add the conversion to make it 12-27.

Saints had momentum with them and attacked the line again, only to be held up in the left-hand corner with the clock on 50 minutes and then Potter stepped in to stop Mitchell as he broke on the blindside of a maul just 10 metres out.

Ford had to step in at scrum-half as 13-man Tigers eventually cleared lines from a defensive lineout and then pulled Nadolo into a scrum near halfway and almost broke clear for a try when loose ball bounced to Matias Moroni. He chipped ahead but was just beaten to the bounce behind the Saints line.

As well as ticking over the scoreboard, it also ate into the yellow-card period and Wigglesworth was back on the field as the game restarted with Tigers 30-12 in front.

The hosts still had a man advantage, though, and used it to overload the left wing as prop Alex Waller ran in their third try on 57 minutes.

From the restart, Freddie Burns earned a penalty with his effort in the kickchase and Dan Cole followed with work over the ball as Ford knocked over two more kicks from around 35 metres as Tigers led 36-19 and took the sting out of the Northampton revival.

More distance opened on the scoreboard when Jack van Poortvliet charged down a clearing kick and had the pace to run in to score his team’s fifth of the afternoon on 66 minutes. Ford’s kick stretched that lead to 43-19 with a dozen minutes remaining on the clock.

Another replacement, prop Nephi Leatigaga, made his sizeable presence felt in gaining a turnover to set up another attack and he was rewarded moments later when Tigers won more turnover ball, allowing debutant Bryce Hegarty to set Murimurivalu away on the left. He bounced off one tackler and dived in for the score.

Ford was off target with his conversion attempt but there were Saints fans heading for the exit with seven minutes still to play.

The hosts still needed another score to claim any consolation from the afternoon and almost had it when David Ribbans picked up just short of the line, only to be held up by a combination of Cowan-Dickie and Hegarty.

But they stayed close to the line and eventually created the opportunity for Grayson to find Skosan with a crosskick for his second try of the day and his team’s fourth.

Grayson added the kick to make it 26-48 but Tigers were still not finished as van Poortvliet stepped in to score an interception try and Ford added the kick to take his own tally to 20 or the day and brought the action to a close.

Match Details

HT ScoreHalf Time Score

NOR 5-27 LEI

FT ScoreFull Time Score

NOR 26-55 LEI




Tom Foley

Northampton Saints
Northampton Saints

Full Time

Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
Northampton Saints
Leicester Tigers

Match Stats

Northampton Saints
Leicester Tigers
Penalties Conceded
Yellow Cards
Red Cards
Tackles Won
77/95 81%
145/167 87%
Scrums Won
2/2 100%
3/3 100%
Lineouts Won
14/16 88%
17/17 100%

Player Stats

Northampton Saints
Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
15Freddie Burns
14Harry Potter
13Matias Moroni
12Dan Kelly
11Nemani Nadolo2T
10George Ford4C1D3P
9Richard Wigglesworth
1Francois van Wyk1T
2Julian Montoya1T
3Dan Cole
4Harry Wells
5Eli Snyman
6Ollie Chessum
7Marco van Staden
8Jasper Wiese
16Tom Cowan-Dickie
17Nephi Leatigaga
18Joe Heyes
19Calum Green
20Tommy Reffell
21Jack van Poortvliet2T
22Bryce Hegarty
23Kini Murimurivalu1T



Seven tries to four, Tigers win in Round 7 at neighbours Northampton.

Scores from Nadolo 2, F van Wyk, Montoya, van Poortvliet (2) and Murimurivalu. And 20 points from skipper Ford. 

Ford kicks the conversion to bring the game to a close.


Van Poortvliet is in unopposed for his second try to bring up the half-century.

Grayson adds the conversion for Saints

Skosan is in for his second of the day for Saints. It's his fifth in two games and their fourth of the day so it is worth a point.


Ford pushes the conversion wide but Tigers are 48-19 in front and there are Saints supporters heading for the exits.


Tigers win turnover ball in Saints territory and Hegarty puts Kini Murimurivalu in possession. He knocks off a tackler and is in on the left to score.

Ford adds the conversion and Tigers are 43-19 in front of their derby rivals.


Jack van Poortvliet charges down a kick and latches on to the ball to run in for his team's fifth try of the day.


Welcome to the family

Bryce Hegarty on for his debut in Tigers backline. 

Muriurivalu and van Poortvliet also join the action. Green and Reffell are already n in the pack.

Brilliant work over the ball on the floor from Dan Cole gains a penalty in Saints territory. Ford makes no mistake with the kick.


Bit of a reshuffle in the Tigers pack as Cowan-Dickie comes on for hobbling Wells. He packs down at flanker in the scrum.

Wiese is back on from yellow card so it is 15 v 15 again.

No pause in the action here as Burns wins a penalty for Tigers and Ford provides the 3-pointer.

Grayson adds the conversion to make it 19-30. Still 20 minutes to play.


Alex Waller scores in the left corner after Saints find extra men out wide.


Saints have to kick out from behind their own line, George Ford fields it and returns with a drop goal straight through the posts!

Wigglesworth is back on from the sin bin.



Saints have momentum with them and attack again but they are held up over the tryline in the left corner.

Wiese is off for a no-arms tackle, the second player to receive a yellow card for Tigers.

Grayson kicks the conversion.

Mitchell scores for Saints.


Richard Wigglesworth is yellow-carded in defence after head on head contact.



Saints get the second half started with James Grayson on for Dan Biggar at fly-half. Tigers are 27-5 in front.


Tries from Nadolo (2), F van Wyk and Montoya for Tigers, followed by a try for Skosan for Saints as we reach half-time with Tigers 27-5 in front on derby day.


Biggar is unable to add the conversion from the right touchline in the final action of the first half.


Dan Kelly stops Hutchinson almost on his own line but Saints keep ball alive through phases and eventually find just enough room for wing Courtnall Skosan to dive in on the right.

Ford conversion from wide on the right side is good and Tigers lead 27-0


The lineout drive is set, Montoya takes control at the back and then breaks off to reach out and score. 



A series of penalties against Saints in the corner. Snyman taking control at the lineout for Tigers but the defence still holding out. Referee now having a word with the defending team..  


Pressure again from Tigers in attack, with Wiese breaking through. He's stopped 10 metres out but Tigers attack the right-hand side and just run out of space.

Referee pauses play for a word with both captains after temperatures rise in the corner.



Saints go through some phases of attack, prompted by scrum-half Mitchell, but he is brought to a sudden halt by Montoya's defence and Tigers earn a penalty at the breakdown. Play is back in the opposition half.


Ford's conversion from the left touchline comes back out of the post with Tigers 20 points in front.


Nadolo picks up from spilled ball by Saints near halfway. He races clear and, even with a slip short of the line, he reaches out to score his second of the afternoon.

Ford adds the extras after the Francois van Wyk try in front of the posts for a 15-point lead.


Francois van Wyk is over for the try.

Patient work from Tigers on the ball, and Dan Kelly manages to beat defenders inside the 22 before the prop arrives to push over.



A couple of penalties give Tigers chance to push down the left. High tackle on Nadolo, then an offence nearer the line. Nice drive from the forwards too. We're still in the corner.


Mistake at the restart gives Saints a penalty but Dan Biggar pushes it wide of the posts.


Ford off target with the conversion attempt from the left touchline but Tigers are eight points in front.


Nemani Nadolo is in for the try.

Good work in attack by Potter and Wiese, then a long pass out wide from Kelly for Nadolo to beat the final defender and dive in.


Tempers frayed in the Tigers 22. Saints were playing penalty advantage but there's a push on Cole and referee overturns the verdict. Ford can clear. 


Decent run for Potter in attack but Saints are back in numbers and Mitchell connects well with his kick to take play 50 metres upfield.



Ford calls for the Mark in defence and then boots upfield, the ball goes into touch in the Saints 22, giving Tigers the throw-in under the new laws.


George Ford kicks the opening points from a penalty inside the Saints 22. 

Saints indecision in their exit, Tigers swarm over the breakdown and earn the penalty award.


Fireworks on the pitch as Saints run out into the sunshine.

It’s George Ford to get the game started here with Tigers kicking left to right as we look from the dugouts.

Keep in touch with Matchday Live right here.


Fireworks on the pitch as Saints run out into the sunshine.

It’s George Ford to get the game started here with Tigers kicking left to right as we look from the dugouts.

Keep in touch with Matchday Live right here.



A nice touch from the hosts as the stadium announcer sends a message of support for Tom and Tiff Youngs and family. Thank you Saints and all in the Rugby Family.



The teams are going through their warm-up sessions as the crowd builds up in the approach to kick-off.

It's bright and sunny, if a bit chilly in the shade. It will be warm enough on the pitch. 



Saints line-up as follows: 15 Rory Hutchinson, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Fraser Dingwall, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Alex Mitchell; 1 Alex Waller (c), 2 Sam Matavesi, 3 Ehren Painter, 4 David Ribbans, 5 Api Ratuniyarawa, 6 Tom Wood, 7 Teimana Harrison, 8 Juarno Augustus

Replacements: 16 Mike Haywood, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Paul Hill, 19 Alex Moon, 20 Alex Coles, 21 Frank Lomani, 22 James Grayson, 23 Tom Litchfield



No changes to the announced team, as follows:


15 Freddie Burns [81], 14 Harry Potter [20], 13 Matías Moroni [19], 12 Dan Kelly [24], 11 Nemani Nadolo [21], 10 George Ford (c)[111], 9 Richard Wigglesworth [18]; 1 Francois van Wyk [3], 2 Julián Montoya [9], 3 Dan Cole [270], 4 Harry Wells [130], 5 Eli Snyman [4], 6 Ollie Chessum [12], 7 Marco van Staden [3], 8 Jasper Wiese [22]

Replacements: 16 Tom Cowan-Dickie [2], 17 Nephi Leatigaga [47], 18 Joe Heyes [76], 19 Calum Green [65], 20 Tommy Reffell [52], 21 Jack van Poortvliet [25], 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Kini Murimurivalu [24]



This is the 247th meeting of the clubs, dating right back to the year of each club's formation in 1880, but the first in front of supporters since September 2020 when Ben Youngs marked his 250th club appearance with a try in a 28-24 Tigers victory.

Including trips to Worcester and Wasps at the end of last season, Tigers have won their last five away games in the competition and have not won six in a row since 2011.

Saints have lost just one of the last four Premiership derby meetings and have not lost at home in this fixture since March 2017.

In 246 previous occasions, Leicester have won 137 to 90 by Northampton and 19 games have been drawn. At Franklin’s Gardens, Tigers have won 46 and lost 64 in 117 meetings.

Francois van Wyk comes into the Tigers line-up with club captain Ellis Genge among five players on England duty. Eli Snyman and Ollie Chessum are added to the forward pack, and there are places for Richard Wigglesworth, Matías Moroni and Freddie Burns in the backline. Bryce Hegarty is in line for his debut from the bench.



Afternoon all. We’re LIVE from Northampton Saints for the derby with Leicester Tigers in the Gallagher Premiership season. Kick-off is at 3.00pm.

Follow all the action with our Matchday Live coverage right here on the Tigers App and LeicesterTigers.com.

Opposition Lineup

Starting XV

Rory Hutchinson
Courtnall Skosan
Matt Proctor
Fraser Dingwall
Tom Collins
Dan Biggar
Alex Mitchell
Alex Waller
Sam Matavesi
Ehren Painter
David Ribbans
Api Ratuniyarawa
Tom Wood
Teimana Harrison
Juarno Augustus


Mike Haywood
Nick Auterac
Paul Hill
Alex Moon
Alex Coles
Frank Lomani
James Grayson
Tom Litchfield

Preview | Tigers set for derby date at Saints

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Northampton Saints host Leicester Tigers in a sold-out derby on Saturday in Round 7 of the Gallagher Premiership season.

The 247th meeting of the clubs, dating back to the year of Leicester’s formation in 1880, is the first in front of supporters since September 2020 when Ben Youngs marked his 250th appearance with a try in a 28-24 Tigers victory.

The sold-out signs will be up at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for this meeting with both clubs making a strong start to the season, Tigers winning their opening six games and Saints losing just once in five.

Including trips to Worcester and Wasps at the end of last season, Tigers have won their last five away games in the competition. They have not won six in a row since 2011.

Saints, though, have lost just one of their last four Premiership derby meetings and have not lost at home in this fixture since March 2017.

In 246 previous occasions, Leicester have won 137 to 90 by Northampton with 19 games drawn. At Franklin’s Gardens, Tigers have won 46 and lost 64 in 117 meetings.

Francois van Wyk comes into the Tigers line-up with club captain Ellis Genge among the five players away on England duty. Eli Snyman and Ollie Chessum also come into the forward pack, and there are places for Richard Wigglesworth, Matías Moroni and Freddie Burns in the backline. Bryce Hegarty is set for his debut after being named among the replacements.

Harry Potter, scorer of three tries in five appearances so far this season, is among the players preparing to run out in a sold-out derby for the first time.

“I’ve played against Northampton a couple of times already but both times have been in an empty stadium,” Potter said.

“I have heard lots of stories about the game and I just want to wait and see it for myself.”

Saints have four players away with England including the uncapped full-back Tommy Freeman, but welcome back Matt Proctor, Tom Wood and Juarno Augustus. Courtnall Skosan, who scored a hat-trick on his debut in a 66-10 win over Worcester Warriors last weekend, continues on the wing.

Referee on Saturday is Tom Foley who has now been in charge of more than 100 Premiership games. His assistants are Jack Makepeace and John Meredith. Television match official is Claire Hodnett.

Tigers will be in change colours of white, black and orange.

There is live coverage of the game on BT Sport 3HD, with the programme starting at 2.30pm and kick-off at 3.00pm.

Or you can keep up to date with the Tigers’ Matchday Live service on app and website, and the club’s social media pages, including full post-match reaction.

posteamteam namepldwdlfadifftftatblbpts
Leicester Tigers
Leicester TigersLEI242004726452274885211394
Northampton Saints
Northampton SaintsNOR2414010764639125998214575
Form Guide
Last Match
Lost to London Irish 22-37
Past Meeting
Won 19-18
Last Match
Past Meeting
Last Match
Beat Bristol Bears 46-24
Past Meeting
Lost 18-19

Matchday Live

Northampton Saints26
Northampton Saints
Leicester Tigers55
Leicester Tigers
Full Time