Harrison: Haskell will be a big hit at Saints

Teimana Harrison believes James Haskell will be a good signing for Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Teimana Harrison believes James Haskell will be a good signing for Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Teimana Harrison says he is really looking forward to the arrival of James Haskell at Saints.

Haskell will move to Northampton on a one-year deal this summer, following the conclusion of his stay at Wasps.

The 33-year-old will bring a wealth of experience to the Saints back row, having won 77 England caps and toured with the British & Irish Lions in 2017.

Haskell is desperate to give himself the best chance possible to represent his country in next year's World Cup in Japan.

And Harrison, who will be competing with Haskell for a spot in the Saints back row, believes the new arrival will have a big impact.

"We’ve been lucky in the last few years that we’ve had a few older guys, especially in the back row position, that I’ve been able to learn off so personally I’m really looking forward to it," said Harrison, who has spent the week at England's training camp in Brighton.

“Obviously there is his banter and everything around the team are sure to lift morale so I think he’ll be good for us.

“He’s a really nice guy, he’s hard into his rugby where he always wants to improve and he’s another guy that wants to get back into England, so I think me and him can bounce off each other and teach each other a few things.

“If you’re not fighting for a spot in the team I don’t think you’re learning.

"Pretty much all of our back row is international so it’s good for the club and it’s good for us on a personal level."

Harrison won the most recent of his five England caps in 2016 and has enjoyed being back in the international set-up.

“It feels really good actually," the 25-year-old said.

"I’ve been out for a little while so to get back into the environment is awesome, I’m learning so much even if it just is for the next week or so.

“Just being around the coaches and the players with the common goal to get better it’s addictive, and you learn so much being here so it’s really valuable for me."

Saints finished ninth in the Aviva Premiership and endured a difficult campaign overall.

But Harrison still managed to impress, and he said: “If you focus on yourself 100 per cent and you give everything I think you can work through it even in a difficult season.

“Obviously we’ve had a tough season at Saints but on the plus side it’s given me the platform to just knuckle down and do what I need to to work on myself and work on my game."