Boss Boyd discusses key area for Saints recruitment ahead of next season

Chris Boyd says Saints have got a couple of back row spots to fill for next season.

Saints boss Chris Boyd
Saints boss Chris Boyd

The black, green and gold lost South African flanker Heinrich Brüssow to retirement during this campaign and another back row forward, Mitch Eadie, will be departing this summer.

Eadie is heading back to his home-town club Bristol Bears, and Saints will be light on back row options.

Tom Wood, Lewis Ludlam, Teimana Harrison and Jamie Gibson are among the men currently vying for positions, with the likes of JJ Tonks, Ollie Newman, Devante Onojaife and Tui Uru up-and-coming options.

But Boyd said: "We definitely need to replace Heinrich Brussow and we're on the hunt for at least one in our back row.

"Heinrich has finished playing and Mitch Eadie's going back to Bristol so we've got a couple of spots we need to fill."

Saints also lost Dylan Hartley to retirement this season, but they are well stocked at hooker.

"We've already got a pretty good roster of hookers and we picked up Sam Matavesi as well when we had a couple of injuries in the hooker space and Dylan's departure," Boyd said.

Saints will lose Cobus Reinach this summer, with the reigning supporters' and players' player of the year off to pastures new.

But with young player of the year Alex Mitchell, Henry Taylor and Connor Tupai also offering options at scrum-half, they won't make a big-money signing in that position.

And Saints also have to be clever with how they cut their cloth as their youngsters continue to enhance their reputation, meaning more funds are required to keep them.

"The rising tide is filling up, there's no doubt about that," Boyd said.

"We need to be very prudent around our top-end recruitment because it will have an impact on our ability to retain the youngsters, who deserve, because of their performances, a bigger slice of the pie.

"That pie is only finite, you've got to divvy it up a certain number of ways and, going forward, the hope is that we're going to be able to keep as many of our youngsters that we've developed as we can."