Hartley warning for Saints ahead of Bath trip

Dylan Hartley
Dylan Hartley
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Super skipper Dylan Hartley has warned Saints they will have to be ‘on the money’ if they are to beat Bath on Friday night.

Hartley was the man of the match as he led his side to a 24-21 victory against Exeter Chiefs at Franklin’s Gardens on Sunday.

The captain scored Saints’ fourth try to secure a winning bonus point and send them up to fourth in the Aviva Premiership standings.

But Bath are just a place behind in fifth, having also won their first two games, and Hartley knows his men must be at full throttle if they are to win at The Rec this week.

“We’ve had two very tough games, two wins,” he said. “It was one away win and one home win so we can’t complain about that.

“We’ve got a short turnaround this week and we’ll have to be on the money again away from home because I watched Bath on Saturday and they’re a good team, especially at home.”

Hartley felt Saints had learned key lessons from their gritty 24-19 opening-day win at Gloucester as they again fought to the end to see off Exeter.

And the hooker, who has now scored two tries in as many games this season, was delighted with how he and his team-mates seized on the Chiefs’ weaknesses.

“We knew they’re a good team that plays for 80 minutes and on a positive note it’s lessons learned from the previous weekend at Gloucester where we were a bit loose and it got away from us,” said Hartley.

“We were lucky to come away with a win down there and on Sunday we recognised what was working for us, the driving maul, and we turned to that and it won us the game.

“We recognised the weakness in their team, hammered it home and got points from it, so that’s a big positive for us.

“Exeter play for 80 minutes, we know that. They had huge motivation coming here, they’ve never won here and we did the double over them last season so they’re a team with no fear.

“They won at Leicester and Gloucester so they’re good on the road and they showed that on Sunday.”