Furbank feels Saints' young stars have to start leading from the front

George Furbank feels Saints' young stars still need to develop their leadership skills.

George Furbank
George Furbank

Furbank is part of a talented team of hot prospects at Saints, many of whom have emerged from the club's Wanderers side.

They flourished earlier in the season, propelling the black, green and gold into the Gallagher Premiership top two.

But life has been tougher in 2020, with Chris Boyd's side winning just two of their past nine league matches.

They are currently on a five-match Franklin's Gardens losing streak and will be desperate to avoid making it six home losses in a row when leaders Exeter Chiefs come calling on Friday night.

And Furbank, who will start at full-back, knows he and his young team-mates must stand up to be counted.

"It's been a big step and maybe sometimes that's where we're struggling, in that not enough of us step up to be leaders because we've got such a young group," said the 23-year-old.

"But I feel like we're getting there, we're learning, we're all trying to get better.

"It's not like we're in the first team and that's it now - there's still a lot of progress to be made and a lot of work to be done.

"But it's just nice that we're able to enjoy it with each other.

"Consistency comes with time and that might be a thing.

"There are a lot of us who are still under 40 or 50 caps, which is not a lot of experience when it comes to Premiership games.

"The more caps we get, the more experience we get and the more consistent we can be as a team."

Furbank's rise has been a rapid one since he started to get regular game time in the black, green and gold.

So fast was his development that he was able to make his England debut during the Six Nations earlier this year.

And he said: "It's been pretty crazy, going from the Six Nations in January, February time to dealing with the whole lockdown situation and then getting back into things again.

"I'm just enjoying being back involved in things.

"Lockdown was enjoyable at times, but also frustrating.

"It's nice to be back again and trying to find the form I had before lockdown."

While many found life in lockdown tough, Furbank tried to take the positives.

And he and Alex Mitchell in particular became social media stars, with their dance routines going viral.

"You've got to keep yourself busy, haven't you?," Furbank said, smiling.

"It was lucky there was three of us as I moved out of my place to be with Dave (Ribbans) and Mitch in a house for five months.

"We had to keep ourselves entertained and we managed not to fall out most of the time.

"There were a few fall-outs but it wasn't too bad.

"I did live with Dave and moved out at the start of January into my place but then two weeks later I moved back with him because I didn't want to spend lockdown alone.

"Mitch was with Dave as well so there were three of us and now I'm the lucky landlord of Alex Coles, just looking after him.

"It's a really nice bunch of lads and we all get along with each other.

"Colesy is three or four years younger than me but you never really think about that because you just spend every day with each other and get along with each other.

"It's nice that we have that."

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