Saints centre Francis earns praise from England boss Jones

Saints star Piers Francis impressed for England against the Barbarians
Saints star Piers Francis impressed for England against the Barbarians

England boss Eddie Jones feels Piers Francis' performance against the Barbarians on Sunday was the Saints centre's best since last summer's tour of Argentina.

Francis popped up with two tries inside the first 30 minutes during England's 63-45 defeat at Twickenham.

The 27-year-old, who moved to Saints after last year's two Tests against Argentina, played the full 80 minutes and was one of the most impressive performers for the hosts.

Former Northampton wing Chris Ashton hogged the headlines as he bagged a hat-trick for the Barbarians.

But when asked who stood out in his own side, Jones said: "I thought Jack Singleton and Tom Curry, in the forwards, did exceptionally well and, in the backs, Piers Francis played his best game since Argentina.

"They were the shining lights for us."

Francis made 21 appearances for Saints last season, starting 19 times and scoring 74 points in the process.

He has three Test caps to his name to date.