Waller has been a huge help for Saints prop Francois

Francois van Wyk arrived at Saints last summer (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Francois van Wyk arrived at Saints last summer (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Francois van Wyk says Alex Waller has been a 'great help' to him since the South African arrived at Saints last summer.

Waller is currently sidelined with an arm injury sustained during the defeat to Newcastle Falcons on December 1.

The prop recently suffered a setback in his recovery, meaning he will be out for a couple more weeks.

That will ensure van Wyk and Fijian international Campese Ma'afu will continue to deputise at loosehead.

And though Waller has not been in action of late, that doesn't mean he hasn't had an influence on others.

"I'm really enjoying playing," said van Wyk, who has made 21 appearances since switching from Western Province prior to the start of the current season.

"I came over to play more rugby and I'm getting a lot of game time so it's really enjoyable.

"I knew it would be a battle between the loosehead props, but it's been good so far.

"Alex got injured and I got my opportunity.

"I've been in the same boat as Alex in the past four years because I've been injured quite a bit.

"For me, it's about getting my body ready for game time and Alex has helped me quite a bit during the season.

"Myself and Alex spend a lot of time together, having a general chat and working on the scrum stuff.

"He's been a great help towards my game."

So how has van Wyk been finding life in the Aviva Premiership?

"It's quite tough and I can feel it on my body now," the 26-year-old said.

"It's week in, week out and it's a tough contest, but it's been great so far.

"Just to get the game time under my belt has been amazing."

Earlier in the season, van Wyk admitted to suffering with nervousness before matches.

But he said: "It's actually been settling down.

"I still get the nerves before some games, but it's been good so far.

"I don't really have any pre-match routines, I just like to chill out and relax.

"It's more about the jokey side for me, I don't like to be too serious."