Mallinder: We were hurt by the crit­ics

The Rugby Paper - - Aviva Premiership -

EMO­TIONAL Saints supremo Jim Mallinder took a swipe at crit­ics who called for his head af­ter the open­ing day thrash­ing by Sara­cens.

He said: “You re­mem­ber what peo­ple say, you read things and it re­ally hurts. It hurts the team and we needed a re­ac­tion, but we got that and we’ve shown that when we get it right we’re a dif­fi­cult team to beat.

“Last week against Le­ices­ter was a good per­for­mance, but we’ve backed it up against a very good, phys­i­cal team.”

Mallinder praised standin skip­per Court­ney Lawes, adding: “He leads by ex­am­ple – ev­ery sin­gle im­pact he does some­thing pos­i­tive, whether that’s in his car­ry­ing or de­fence. It’s the best rugby I’ve seen from him.”

Bath boss Todd Black­ad­der strug­gled for pos­i­tives, but of Sam Un­der­hill he said: “He got stuck in and re­ally put him­self about, but it’s a funny law you can’t re­place some­one who’s been knocked out!

“I hope they’ll re­view that, but there are no ex­cuses, we weren’t good enough.”

He added: “Matt Gar­vey looks like a pulled calf, so that’s four or five weeks.”

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