Leicester Tigers interim head coach Geordan Murphy felt his side took a 'couple of steps forward' in their 23-15 success against Saints at Twickenham on Saturday.
Tigers took their chances when they came and defended well as they spoiled Saints' day.
Efforts from Jamie Gibson, David Ribbans and Mike Haywood were not enough for the home side in the Gallagher Premiership game.
And for Tigers, it was a hugely pleasing derby-day win in tough conditions.
"The result was great," said Murphy. "We wanted to come here and get a win.
"It was a scrappy affair and it was pretty difficult to play any quality of rugby out there but we stuck in.
"At times our defence was very good but we still leaked some tries which is disappointing.
"There were some elements of the game that were really pleasing but there were areas we can work on too."
"Overall, I felt it was a couple of steps forward.
"Although we won the Sale game I felt we didn't have that much intensity or heart whereas on Saturday I thought it that was there in abundance."
Stand-in full-back Jonah Holmes played a key role in Tigers' victory.
And Murphy said: "I've been thinking about it (playing Holmes at 15) for a little while. He has played there before and has been running around in training in the last few weeks.
"He had an opportunity the other week when Adam Thompstone got injured and did well. With Telusa (Veainu) and Mat Tait injured we are down the pecking order a little bit but watching him in training last week I thought he could have a run out.
"For the balance of the side and the way we were with selection I thought he deserved a shot and he really repaid me."