Boyd happy to see key Saints duo make long-awaited return

Dylan Hartley made his first Saints appearance since January in Friday night's win against Glasgow (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Dylan Hartley made his first Saints appearance since January in Friday night's win against Glasgow (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Chris Boyd was happy to see Dylan Hartley and Harry Mallinder make their long-awaited return to Saints action.

Hartley had not featured for his club since January due to concussion sustained during the Six Nations.

But the England captain made his comeback from the bench in Friday's 41-15 pre-season win against Glasgow Warriors at Franklin's Gardens.

Hartley came on for the final 20 minutes and played his part in a forward push that helped James Grayson to put the seal on proceedings with a late try.

"Dylan's been pulling at the chain for a couple of weeks now," Boyd said.

"We targeted it a couple of weeks ago that this might be his return to play. As we got closer, it looked like that was going to happen.

"He got 20 minutes on this occasion and he is back."

Mallinder got five minutes more than Hartley, coming on for Ahsee Tuala at full-back on 55 minutes.

And Boyd said: "It's great to see Harry get out there and shake some rust off.

"He'll be much better for the run."

Boyd now has a few selection dilemmas ahead of Saturday's Gallagher Premiership curtain-raiser at Gloucester.

"There are still some decisions to be made," he said.

"They're good decisions because we've got guys in the loose forwards who are playing well, guys in the midfield who are putting their hand up.

"There are some good decisions to be made and we'll pick the team that we think is best to play Gloucester.

"The team will support those decisions and move on."