Irvine ready to savour another big Saints experience

Geordie Irvine spoke about 'a bit of a blur' and a 'mind-blowing tempo' when he looked back on his first two Saints appearances.

By Tom Vickers
Thursday, 17th March 2022, 7:00 am
Geordie Irvine
Geordie Irvine

And the 18-year-old, who joined the Senior Academy ahead of the current campaign, can't wait for more of those experiences this month.

Irvine is one of a number of young players set to feature against Saracens in the Premiership Rugby Cup clash at StoneX Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

And there will also be one more pool game to play in March, with Newcastle Falcons coming to town on the final Wednesday of the month.

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Irvine got two chances to sample first-team action at Saints back in November, coming off the bench in a home Premiership Rugby Cup defeat to London Irish before starting at Harlequins in the same competition on the following weekend.

And speaking at his first Saints media session this week, he said: "It was really good.

"The first one against Irish was a bit of a blur.

"It was probably the most tired I've ever been after seven minutes of rugby - the tempo blew my mind!

"But then the week after we got to play against Quins and it was the most fun I've ever had playing a game.

"Just running out into a stadium that actually had people in it was pretty crazy so they were both really good experiences.

"The Harlequins game was very close.

"We were definitely happy with how we played in that game but we wanted to squeak a win there.

"Everyone was really supportive going into that week in terms of helping me to learn the lineout, the set plays, getting into shape in open play.

"There was constant support and us going out and having a good game as a team was the perfect way to end the week."

Saints look to be heading out of the Premiership Rugby Cup at the first hurdle, but that won't make these experiences any less special for their young players.

And Peterborough-born Irvine says the presence of supporters will be a big thing for him this weekend.

"I'm looking forward to it a lot," Irvine said.

"I played down there once just after lockdown in the Under-18s league and it was amazing to play in that stadium.

"That was just when there were family and friends there so to think there might actually be plenty of people this time, it will be a great atmosphere."

Irvine has had a taste of playing for Bedford Blues this season, and he found that hugely beneficial in his development.

"Things have been going well," he said.

"I've really enjoyed my first few months here in the Saints squad and it was really good to go to Bedford.

"They're a really nice group of people and the way they play is similar to how we play here so it was quite easy to slot in there.

"They're really accommodating and it was a really good experience.

"There's plenty of us from Saints who go there and they help you get to know everyone better."