Saints hand new deal to South African prop

Francois van Wyk is staying at Saints
Francois van Wyk is staying at Saints

Saints have handed a new deal to Francois van Wyk, keeping the prop at Franklin's Gardens until at least 2021.

Van Wyk becomes the 11th player to extend his contract at Northampton this season, and he is the only one who didn't come through the club's Academy.

The 27-year-old arrived at Saints during the summer of 2017 and has gone on to make 43 appearances so far.

Having joined from Western Force, Van Wyk had a tricky first season at Saints as it included the departure of director of rugby Jim Mallinder.

But the South African has gone from strength to strength during the current campaign, providing a real challenge to the long-serving Alex Waller for a starting spot at loosehead.

Van Wyk scored his first points for Saints with a try double against Bristol Bears in October - and he can't wait to show more of what he's made of.

“I’m really happy to be staying on with Saints for another couple of years,” van Wyk said.

“I feel very at home here at the club, and the confidence that Chris Boyd and the other coaches have put in me this season have helped me to kick on.

“The players around me are helping me a lot and I just want to build on my performances this season and improve my consistency.

“I’m very excited for the challenge that lies ahead of us in the coming seasons and hopefully we can pick up some silverware for these great fans.”