Young prop Painter impressing at Saints

Ehren Painter looks set to have a big future at Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Ehren Painter looks set to have a big future at Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Alex Waller says Ehren Painter 'didn't look out of place at all' during the young prop's first start for Saints.

And Waller has tipped the 20-year-old to have a 'very bright future' in the game.

Saints put their faith in Painter on Saturday, handing him the No.3 shirt for the game against Gallagher Premiership champions Saracens.

And Painter was not fazed by the challenge of facing England star Mako Vunipola.

Waller was on the other side of the scrum and feels his young team-mate put up a good fight in Saints' 38-27 defeat at Franklin's Gardens.

"Big Rig, as he's affectionately known, did a cracking job," Waller said.

"He played and didn't look out of place at all.

"He's got a very bright future.

"We've also got the likes of Ben Franks coming off the bench with the experience he has so it's brilliant to be able to chop and change, especially at tighthead.

"If we want to give Franksy a rest we can bring Ehren in and there will be no difference. He did well."

Painter had previously made five appearances as a replacement for the Saints first team.

And boss Chris Boyd was happy to give the Academy product a shot from the start against Saracens.

"It was a young man who has only just turned 20 up against one of the best looseheads in the world, Mako Vunipola," Boyd said.

"I thought he did a pretty good job and he ran out of petrol at the end, but a lot of our guys did.

"It's all part of his long-term learning journey and it's a good start."