Saints relishing start of pre-season campaign
Jim Mallinder says Saints can't wait to get their pre-season campaign started.
Mallinder's men begin their friendly fixtures with a game against the Dragons at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).
Matches against Nottingham, Glasgow Warriors and Ulster will follow before the month is out.
And the Saints squad are looking forward to getting some game time after some gruelling fitness work.
“We’re looking forward to Saturday’s game a lot,” Mallinder said.
“The players have worked hard over the last few weeks, but when there is rugby at the end of the week there is a bit more focus and something to work towards.
“Pre-season friendlies are always important as we integrate new players and try different combinations.
"Mitch Eadie and Jamal Ford Robinson (who have both joined from Bristol) have settled in really well, and Piers Francis has just arrived, too.
"We’ve also got players who have come back from long-term injury like Tom Stephenson and Jamie Elliott, and it will be good to see them in action.”