Ludlam tipped to be a future Saints skipper

Lewis Ludlam has impressed at Saints this season (picture: Sharon Lucey)
Lewis Ludlam has impressed at Saints this season (picture: Sharon Lucey)

Heinrich Brüssow has backed Lewis Ludlam to be a future Saints captain.

Ludlam has been in fine form since being given an extended run in the first team this season, with the 23-year-old starting 14 games under new boss Chris Boyd.

He has been keeping more experienced players out of the team in recent weeks.

And one of those, South African back row forward Brüssow, has been hugely impressed with Ludlam's displays and general attitude.

"Lewis is a great rugby player but he's also a great person," said Brüssow, who has 23 South Africa caps to his name.

"He's keen to learn and he always wants to be the best at what he does.

"He's keen to ask questions and he also works really hard.

"He's a good inspiration, a good leader and he will probably be one of the club's captains one day.

"He's just a great example and you see by the way that he plays that he's got that warrior attitude that just keeps going and never stops.

"For me as an older guy helping him and seeing the way he evolves, it's really exciting for me."

Saints have plenty of options in the back row, and James Haskell is now closing in on a comeback after a lengthy spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

That means there will be a real battle for starting spots.

And Brüssow, who recently returned from concussion, said: "Our loose forwards have done really well in my absence.

"Lewis has played really well, Teimana (Harrison) has always been right up there, Woody (Tom Wood), Gibbo (Jamie Gibson) - there's a lot of guys really doing well.

"Getting back in the team and putting your worth out there is important because there's a lot of competition.

"We're still in the mix in the Premiership and the Challenge Cup so this is a really key part of the season.

"It's important for individuals to perform well to help put pressure on others."