Promising prop Painter signs first senior contract at Saints

Ehren Painter has signed his first senior contract at Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)
Ehren Painter has signed his first senior contract at Saints (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Saints have handed promising tighthead prop Ehren Painter his first senior contract with the club.

Painter has agreed a deal that will keep him at Franklin's Gardens until at least 2021.

It is a big boost for Saints, with the 20-year-old showing why he is one of the most highly-rated youngsters in England in recent times.

Painter's most memorable first-team performance to date came at Welford Road back in April as his incredibly impressive cameo helped Saints to win at Leicester for the first time since 2007.

He has gone on to feature in eight of the 11 Saints fixtures so far this season, with only a recent back problem stopping him from playing even more.

And Painter can't wait to continue his progression at Saints.

“I’m very excited to have the opportunity to continue here at Franklin’s Gardens,” Painter said.

“Chris Boyd has shown with selection this season that age is only a number, and that opportunities are there for you to take if you’re performing well.

“Saints have supported me all the way through my Academy career, and this environment is a brilliant one for me to learn my craft – I’m absorbing new things all the time from the likes of Matt Ferguson, Phil Dowson, Ben Franks, and Dylan Hartley.

“I’m really relishing taking the next step in my career and seeing what this squad can achieve in the months and years ahead.”

Painter represented England at both Under-17 and Under-18 level, before earning the call into the Under-20s squad for the Six Nations and World Rugby Under-20 Championships in 2018.

He also impressed for the Wanderers as they won back-to-back Premiership Rugby A League titles.

And Saints boss Chris Boyd said: “Ehren has developed into a really solid and dependable tighthead; he’s still young and has plenty to learn, but I’m certain he has all the tools he needs to become a player of exceptional quality.

“We’re proud of our home-grown players here in Northampton, and Ehren fully deserves to add his name to the long list of Academy graduates to progress into the senior squad.

"I’m really looking forward to seeing how far he can go."