Auterac so happy to score for Saints rather than against them

Nick Auterac is eager to deliver more Saints joy when his side travel to face Exeter Chiefs at Sandy Park on Saturday.

By Tom Vickers
Wednesday, 22nd September 2021, 12:52 pm
Updated Wednesday, 22nd September 2021, 12:52 pm
Nick Auterac
Nick Auterac

The loosehead prop picked up his first try in the black, green and gold last weekend, helping to propel Chris Boyd's side past Gloucester on Gallagher Premiership opening day.

Auterac came off the bench and scored with his first touch.

And he was delighted to have finally registered for Saints, having notched his only two previous tries against them.

"It was my first touch, five points, get me off!," joked Auterac.

"I was actually really happy with it and if you were behind the posts you could see me grinning because I knew I was going to score.

"There was literally no one in front of me and I was running towards the try line grinning, like 'I'm going to score now'.

"My mum forwarded me the video of the actual match footage and there's me turning around and smiling.

"I was just really happy.

"It's obviously rare I get to be on the end of scoring a try.

"In fact, the only other two tries I've scored have been against Saints so it's nice to be on the other side of it.

"One was 2016 at The Rec for Bath and the other was on that same side here at the Gardens, about 20 metres across, again for Bath.

"Now it's nice to be scoring for Saints."

Auterac delivered a really strong showing from the bench last weekend.

And he savoured every second of it.

"It was a nice day, made for running rugby," he said.

"Now we're in the autumn but we've still got good weather so we can play that expansive rugby, which is quite fun to play at times.

"It's probably not going to be quite as enjoyable in the next few months with rainy conditions where we're going to have to slog it out.

"It's important to enjoy the sun while it lasts and it was nice to have a run about last weekend.

"We were winning when I came on, which is always nice, and we went on to win.

"I wouldn't say we were comfortable because Gloucester are a good side and it could have gone wrong, but we always felt quite in control and it's nice to be in that position when you're playing."

Saints bagged the full five points in the 34-20 success last Saturday.

And Auterac added: "We spoke about it in pre-season in that you never know if you drop a point here and there how it will affect you come the end of the season.

"Usually in the top four, top five it can get quite tight come the end of the season so being able to pick up those five points was good because we might need that extra point."

Saints will have their work cut out to take anything from this weekend's fixture as they square up to an Exeter Chiefs side wounded by their opening-day defeat at Leicester Tigers.

"Exeter is always a tough place to go and they're going to have that added oomph from coming off a result they wouldn't have been too happy with against Leicester," Auterac said.

"They were in the Premiership final last year and they're going to be hurting after last week.

"We're expecting a reaction from there but it's nice to go down there and have a hard game and hopefully get a good victory.

"They've made a habit of being good at home."

But Exeter haven't been infallible, with Saints winning down at Sandy Park in February and Harlequins beating them at Twickenham last season on the way to lifting the Premiership trophy.

Auterac joined Saints from Quins last year so he was happy to see his old side grab the glory.

And he is hoping their success can be a template for Saints this season.

"It was obviously weird for me because I came from Quins," Auterac said.

"I was really happy for them and from a Saints point of view it goes to show that it's about making sure you get in that top four.

"Come semi-final time it's anyone's game.

"They played some fun running rugby and those two games they played in (the semi-final and final) were some of the best games I've ever watched.

"We play some fun running rugby here and that's where the game is going.

"Fans and players want good running rugby and so we're in the same sort of boat, playing a similar sort of style.

"Hopefully that's the way in which the game's going and hopefully we can put on a show."