Hartley expects big showing from Saints in Premiership final

Dylan Hartley believes today’s Premiership final will bring a big performance out of Saints.

The Northampton skipper drove his side to victory in the semi-final at Saracens, as Jim Mallinder’s men showed real determination to make the showpiece.

THINKING BIG - Dylan Hartley is confident Saints can shine on the Twickenham stage (picture by Linda Dawson)

THINKING BIG - Dylan Hartley is confident Saints can shine on the Twickenham stage (picture by Linda Dawson)

The 27-13 win at Allianz Park was Saints’ best display of the season to date and they know they will need another huge effort to topple the Tigers.

But Hartley believes his men are capable of that and is convinced he and his team can shine at Twickenham this afternoon.

“We’ve been confident all season, we’ve done the right things to make the top four and we want a big game now in the final,” he said.

“The intensity and just the occasion of being in a final means everyone’s game will raise, as will the Leicester players. It will be just add that bit more to it.”

Saints have used their underdogs tag as a real motivation tool this season, including at Saracens where they sprung a surprise.

But Hartley feels his side can tap into more than that this weekend as they aim to claim their first ever Premiership title.

“We’ve got so much to play for,” said the England and Lions hooker. “We’ve got lads leaving, we’ve got the underdog tag, we’ve had this up and down season.

“We’ve got so much motivation. It’s 80 minutes and if you can’t get yourself up for that in a final... It’s club players playing in a final at Twickenham and it’s a huge occasion.”