Mallinder delighted as Francis signs on at Saints

Jim Mallinder has snapped up Piers Francis
Jim Mallinder has snapped up Piers Francis
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Saints boss Jim Mallinder has expressed his delight after securing the signature of talented playmaker Piers Francis.

The 26-year-old will move to Franklin’s Gardens this summer, joining Saints from Super Rugby side the Blues.

He is capable of playing at centre or fly-half, where he will be expected to provide competition for Stephen Myler.

And Mallinder is happy to have got his man, adding depth to his half-back ranks with JJ Hanrahan having agreed to return to Munster at the end of this season.

“Piers is a player who has been very impressive over the past couple of years,” Mallinder said.

“He is a very good playmaker who is comfortable with ball in hand but who can also control a match with his kicking game, too.

“He has all the talent and temperament that it takes to be a success in the Aviva Premiership and we’re looking forward to him joining us later in the year.

“We’re already excited about 2017/18 and the signings we have made, with Piers joining Rob Horne and Cobus Reinach in the backs and Mitch Eadie and Jamal Ford Robinson in the forwards.

“Plenty of our current players also starred in the Six Nations and we believe that we will be in the position to compete at the top end of the Aviva Premiership next season.”