Northampton can be ‘one of best in the world’ – Lawes

Home » Northampton can be ‘one of best in the world’ – Lawes

Northampton’s narrow loss to Leinster in the Investec Champions Cup semi-finals shows they have the potential to be one of the best club sides in the world, says flanker Courtney Lawes.

Leinster won 20-17 in front of more than 82,000 at Croke Park, but were pushed hard by the Saints who came from 20-3 down to set-up a thrilling finish.

Lawes says Saints must use that experience as they look to become a leading force in club rugby.

“A lot of players have never played in front of anywhere near that amount of people,” the former England captain told BBC 5 live.

“It takes time to be able perform on a stage like that. It’s a great experience for the boys to get under their belt and to understand what it takes to win at the highest level.”

A Saints legend, 35-year-old Lawes will leave Northampton in the summer to join Brive after 17 seasons at Franklin’s Gardens.

“We have proven [on Saturday] we have got what it takes to be one of the best teams in the world,” he added.

“It’s now up to us to push on, for me to push on until the end of the season and the boys beyond that.

“I am excited to see how far the boys can take it.”

Lawes hopes the Champions Cup run – and the experience of knockout rugby – will benefit Saints as they look to win the Premiership for the first time since 2014.

Phil Dowson’s side have a four-point lead at the top of the league with two rounds of the regular season remaining.

“It’s not doing the fancy stuff [in knockout games], it’s actually just doing the basics and getting your game on the pitch,” Lawes added.

“Hopefully we can continue to learn and make sure we get it right for the end of the season.”

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