Training levels 'through the roof' as Saints players compete for place in semi-final line-up

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At this stage last season, you wouldn't have believed that James Ramm would have to compete for a place in a play-off semi-final line-up at Saints.

He was the players' player and breakthrough player of the season at cinch Stadium at Franklin's Gardens for 2022/23, having enjoyed an incredible first campaign at Saints.

And while he hasn't taken a step back this season - far from it in fact - others have taken huge strides forward, meaning very few players can be assured of a start in the knockout clash with Saracens on May 31.

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The likes of Ollie Sleightholme and George Hendy have been flying, making massive progress to stamp their mark on the Saints side.

James Ramm (photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)James Ramm (photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
James Ramm (photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

And Ramm has continued to impress, before and after the long-term knee injury he suffered against Harlequins in November.

So there are certainly decisions to be made on the wing for the Saints coaches ahead of the showdown with the reigning Gallagher Premiership champions.

"We've been competing really hard as a squad all year and our training level has been through the roof so we need to keep that going," Ramm said.

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"It's exciting and to be able to play that (semi-final) at home is massive for us.

"I'm really looking forward to it.

"We must look forward and really get excited for the this one."

Saints were beaten 43-12 at Bath last Saturday as their regular-season campaign ended in defeat.

But they still managed to finish top of the table after Saracens lost at home to Sale Sharks.

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Ramm started for Saints at Bath, lining up at full-back and bagging himself a first-half try.

And he said: "We weren't able to put our game on the park, which is what we aim to do every week.

"We didn't get enough go-forward to play the way we wanted to play.

"Their desperation was there from the start.

"In patches we played how we wanted to play and we showed our Saints rugby at times but it wasn't there for the majority of it.

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"Frankly, we didn't turn up at the start of both halves so that's completely on us.

"We go out in every game wanting to perform and play the way we want to play.

"But the bright side is that we've got this weekend off and then we're back into some more rugby."

So how was Ramm feeling after playing the full 80 minutes against Bath, having missed the previous week's win against Gloucester?

"I had a little back spasm last week but I'm good now," he said.

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