Boyd has been 'very pleased' with attitude of entire Saints squad

Chris Boyd has hailed Saints’ fringe players for the way they have handled a lack of game time this season.

By Tom Vickers
Saturday, 19th June 2021, 7:00 am
Chris Boyd
Chris Boyd

With no Wanderers matches able to be played, many members of the black, green and gold squad have been unable to get much match action.

Towards the end of the season, players such as Harry Mallinder and Ashee Tuala had to make do with simply training.

But Boyd has been really happy with the way those who haven’t been involved have handled the situation.

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“It’s part of life in a team sport, whether it be rugby or anything else, that you need to have more than just the guys who play on a Saturday,” Boyd said.

“Getting guys to buy into the fact their contribution to the week is more than just playing on a Saturday is a bit foreign to some.

“But in the very best teams, you accept that your job this week is not to play, your job is to help prepare, both yourself and the team.

“I’ve got to say I’ve been very pleased with the group.

“Of course there are frustrations and everyone has knuckled down and done their role.”

Saints concluded their 2020/21 campaign with an agonising 30-24 defeat at Bath last Saturday.

But the result didn’t really matter as Boyd’s side were always guaranteed to finish fifth in the Gallagher Premiership, three places above where they ended the previous season.

And when asked whether he feels his players have progressed during the past year, Boyd said: “You’d like to think that if you get your coaching and development right, everyone is better at the end of the year than they are at the start.

“That’s not true with everyone, some people have form slumps and confidence slumps and don’t get selected because someone else plays better.

“In the case of someone like Tommy Freeman, he was a rank outsider in the betting at the start of the year but he’s come forward and taken a spot so that has an impact on someone else.

“That’s just the way it works and you’ve got to get over your lip and get on with it.”