Saints delight as winger North signs new deal

STAYING AT SAINTS - Wales winger George North
STAYING AT SAINTS - Wales winger George North

Winger George North has ended speculation linking him with a move away from Franklin’s Gardens by signing a new deal at Saints.

North had been linked with a return to former club Scarlets, with his Northampton contract due to end at the conclusion of the current campaign.

But he has now committed his long-term future to Saints, who have opted not to disclose the length of the 23-year-old’s new deal.

Jim Mallinder was always adamant that North would remain at the Gardens, claiming he was ‘very, very confident’ that the player would stay.

And his confidence has been justified, with Saints announcing North’s renewal on Thursday afternoon.

“We’re delighted that George has decided to remain here at Franklin’s Gardens,” said Mallinder.

“He is a proven world class performer, something he has shown over and over again in his time here.

“Not only is he a top player, but he is a great person to have around the club.

“He is a positive and enthusiastic character who is very driven to improve.

“He is extremely dedicated both on and off the pitch and we look forward to him continuing to play and develop here.”

North has scored 22 tries in 42 appearances since joining Saints from Scarlets in the summer of 2013.

He helped the club win the Aviva Premiership and the Amlin Challenge Cup in 2014 and remains a key player for his country, Wales.

“I am massively delighted to extend my time at the Gardens,” North said.

“It has been a pleasure to play for this great club and for its fans, who are some of the best in rugby.

“It’s been a fantastic couple of years where we have enjoyed much success and is a hugely competitive environment where I can continue to develop and improve as a player.

“I am looking forward to much more success working with a great bunch of players and coaches.”