New attack coach Vesty outlines his Saints vision

Sam Vesty's first Saints interview was a shining example of the appetite for success at the club this summer.

Friday, 13th July 2018, 1:02 am
Updated Tuesday, 17th July 2018, 6:43 pm
Attack coach Sam Vesty can't wait to see what Saints are able to produce this season (picture: Dave Ikin)

The former Leicester Tigers player, who has forged a real reputation as a coach with Worcester Warriors, spoke passionately about what he and his fellow coaches are aiming to achieve at Franklin's Gardens in the months and years to come.

Saints have assembled a young, ambitious coaching group that will be guided by experienced boss Chris Boyd, who will arrive full-time from Super Rugby side the Hurricanes for the start of the pre-season campaign next month.

Boyd has already been part of Saints' preparations, having travelled to England for a couple of weeks at the start of the return to training.

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And attack coach Vesty is clearly in sync with the new man about the style the men in black, green and gold will adopt this season.

"When I first started talking with Chris about working together, we had very similar ideas on how we play the game and how best to get that across to the players," Vesty said.

"Chris has had a big impact since he's come in, putting some good guidelines in place for staff and players for his first few weeks in pre-season.

"It's a collaborative process where Chris has given me a lot of power to put what I believe into our attack but with his beliefs as well.

"There's no point in running an attack if you've not got the backing of the players so that's important as well.

"By the end of the year, I'd like fans to see how we want to attack and how we want to defend and what that looks like. If we've done that, results will have looked after themselves."

Saints' new-look coaching staff also includes Alan Dickens, Phil Dowson and Matt Ferguson.

And Vesty, who has experience of working with Eddie Jones' England set-up, said: "I walked straight into a coaching group who are good blokes.

"Rugby has a lot of good people in it and whenever you go into a different team, there are good blokes there.

"It's been a really smooth process for me, working with the players, who have really bought into what we want to do.

"It's been a really easy process."

So what attracted Vesty to Saints?

"A massive draw for me was that it's a big, solid club with good foundations," he said.

"There are good players who are hungry to learn and the one thing I've found from the first few weeks of working with them is that they are really hard working and they're like sponges. They want as much information and coaching and they want to get better.

"My big philosophy - and Chris will back this 100 per cent - is that we want our players to continually improve and there are good signs in the first few weeks."

The first Gallagher Premiership game for new-look Saints will come at Gloucester on September 1.

And Vesty is not fazed by a trip to take on the west country side, who can call on the likes of Danny Cipriani and Jason Woodward.

He said: "Kingsholm is a difficult place to play but there are 11 other difficult places to play.

"You've got to play them all and this competition has gone from strength to strength.

"I can see this year being the most competitive it's been. You can't really see who is going to be in the top four or the bottom four.

"It bodes well for a really good competition."

The Saints coaches are keen to avoid focusing too much on what opposition sides can do and look more at what their men can produce.

Vesty explained: "We've talked about where we want to be this season but our focus as a coaching team is very much on our performances.

"We're looking at whether we're attacking well, whether we're difficult to score against, whether we're exiting well and then the results will look after themselves.

"The only way to give yourself a long-term view and get consistent results is to look at performance.

"We're putting a lot of emphasis on how we're going to be playing and that side of it.

"It is going to be exciting to see those first few games and put what we want to be and how we want to attack onto an opposition.

"We want to say 'this is us and come and try to live with what we can do'.

"We'll see where it stacks up and I'm really looking forward to that."