Cobus showing his class in Saints cameos

Cobus Reinach scored his first Saints try in the win at London Irish (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Cobus Reinach scored his first Saints try in the win at London Irish (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

It was only a short cameo, but Cobus Reinach's appearance at the Madejski Stadium last Sunday will have left a mark on anyone who witnessed it.

That is because the scrum-half not only grabbed his first Saints try in the 40-25 success against London Irish, he also showed his defensive capabilities.

Reinach made a fantastic tap tackle to stop a London Irish break in its tracks.

And he didn't waste long in finishing a counter-attack of his own as he sprinted clear from inside his own half to dot down.

It was a memorable moment for the South African ace and for those Saints fans who made the trip to Reading for an enjoyable match.

"It was the first time I got a bit of time, the opportunity came and it's good to get your first try and get off the mark to get a few points for the team," Reinach said.

"I just focused on breathing - I was so tired, but I enjoyed having that run and scoring that.

"We played some good rugby and showed what we could do.

"We knew we'd have to defend quite well in the second half and we made a few lapses to let them through a few times, but we did well to go away and get five points."

Reinach's Saints career started with an outing for the Wanderers at Sale earlier this month.

He produced an accomplished 50-minute performance in that victory, and he has been handed appearances off the bench in the past three Premiership matches.

Saints have won all of those games, having suffered a 55-24 defeat against Saracens on the opening day of the season.

Reinach travelled with the team for that game and he didn't let the result alarm him.

"I loved going to Twickenham - it's a beautiful stadium - and I don't think anyone expected that," the 27-year-old said.

"We had a good training week, we were confident but it's a rugby game and stuff like that happens.

"We just need to make sure it doesn't happen again.

"We've built good momentum since then and we have a lot of players in form.

"We're playing some good rugby and we just need to keep it going."

Reinach is revelling in the physical nature of the Premiership.

"I enjoy it," he said. "It's a bit more tactical.

"In Super Rugby we tend to chuck it around a bit more, but this is much more tactical with decision making.

"You have to keep your head up and look for opportunities.

"I love attacking - I think any rugby player would say that.

"Getting the ball in your hands, beating players here and there is what you want to do, and we're doing it quite well.

"We have our X factor players and they're in form, playing great rugby."

One of the men charged with keeping Saints' attacking tempo high is Reinach's countryman and fellow scrum-half Nic Groom.

And although they are locked in a battle for the No.9 shirt, it is nothing but a friendly rivalry.

"We're a team, great friends and we help each other with the calling and just to know what to do where on the field," Reinach said.

"He's playing some great rugby.

"He's quite a hard bloke, who doesn't mind tackling.

"A lot of scrum-halves tend to shy away from tackling but he's quite up front and not scared of anyone.

"I try to be similar and he's got a good kicking game, managing the game well.

"He's a great player.

"It's nice to have a few South African boys here, but we have a mixture of countries and that's good."

Next up for Saints is a clash with Harlequins at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

And Reinach said: "We've looked at their rugby and they play quite a good brand.

"They like to throw the ball around and I know we're up for the challenge.

"It's going to be a big defensive day and we like to tackle, so we'll be up for it."