performance we put in this season – we’re just excited to get back out on the pitch next week and put it all out there. “There’s been plenty of positive change at the club; we’re really tight as a group of people and that really helps when you’re out there fighting with good teams like Exeter, plus we know exactly what we’re trying to accomplish in terms of our game-plan. “Obviously we didn’t do that today because of our ill- discipline, but that’s not the worst thing in the world to have to try and put right in the space of one week – we know where we went wrong.” Northampton’s league tally of 56 points was enough to secure a return to the Premiership’s play-off rounds for the first time since 2015, after Wasps beat Harlequins at the Ricoh Arena. A Twickenham Final date with either Saracens or Gloucester Rugby awaits if they can find a way past the Chiefs, and Lawes is under no illusions that if that is to happen, Northampton will have to put in the hard yards this week. He added: “Exeter are a really good team and we just know that we can’t afford to give them that amount of field position or time with the ball again otherwise they are going to score plenty of points. “That pick-and-go game is hard to play against. We only managed to stop it once today so we need to take a look at that and work hard in the week.
“But we don’t mind being underdogs at all; we beat them on our patch earlier in the season and if we do execute our game-plan properly and get it right then we can beat anyone.” Like Lawes, Saints Director of Rugby Chris Boyd is aware of the challenge facing his side against the Chiefs, who are preparing for a fourth successive semi-final appearance. “We come back here to play these guys and there’s no surprises or secrets - we know what we’re going to have to deal with and we’re going to do our best to do that. “The power came on from them in the last 15 minutes of that first half. We controlled the first 25 minutes and didn’t let them get into the game. They got into the game through our errors and ill-discipline. They scrum you to death, put it to the corner and so it goes on. “We beat them at home at Christmas time with a really good, disciplined and accurate performances. If we’re not disciplined and accurate next week, we’ll come here and get a spanking. “But if we get our game right, we’re in with a chance. We’ve got to play our game and we have to have the ball to do that. We’ve got to be better off the source of ball that we’ll get.”
EXETER CHIEFS VS NORTHAMPTON SAINTS
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