Mallinder urges Saints players to take their cup chance

NEW CHALLENGE - Jim Mallinder is ready to introduce fresh faces to the first-team mix (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

NEW CHALLENGE - Jim Mallinder is ready to introduce fresh faces to the first-team mix (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

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Jim Mallinder has stressed Saints will not be using the upcoming LV= Cup games to take a breather.

Instead, the director of rugby is expecting his players to go all out as they bid to stake their claim for a place in the squad for the Aviva Premiership clash with Exeter on November 14.

Saints will throw plenty of this season’s Wanderers squad into the first-team mix for Saturday’s home clash with Newcastle Falcons.

And Mallinder expects a good performance from the players who will look to fill the void left by the international stars, who have headed off to train with their national teams.

“We won’t be taking a breath because it becomes a different challenge now,” said Mallinder, who has steered Saints to six wins from eight games this season.

“We’ve got a different group of players coming in who we need to make sure get up to speed quickly.

“What it does do is it gives us two weeks to sort out our best team ready for Exeter, which is a big Premiership game.

“We’re going to lose a lot of players, they all deserve to be picked for their country, and we’re losing more than we’ve ever lost.

“But we’ve got the squad, the players are all eager and the LV is competition that provides a good opposition to get others up to speed.”