Bedford experiences have set Saints forward Lockett up for Stormers clash

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
While some Saints players will feel like it has been forever since they last played, Tom Lockett is more than match-ready ahead of Saturday's return to Gardens action.

Lockett has been lining up for Bedford Blues in the Championship, continuing to show his potential.

And now he is looking forward to taking another step forward in Saints colours when South African side DHL Stormers come to town for an exhibition match this weekend.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I've played six games this year at Bedford and it's been brilliant," Lockett said. "We've probably not had the results we would have liked, but it's invaluable for me to get game time.

Tom Lockett (photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)Tom Lockett (photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)
Tom Lockett (photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

"It's seamless going there because as well as the players, there's also a big link with the coaches so they use similar language that we do, a similar calling system and all the lads are brilliant."

But Lockett is now very much back at Saints and ready to pull on the black, green and gold shirt this weekend.

"Everyone is very excited to get back into some games," he said. "We've probably had longer without them than we've ever had in a season.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Everyone's got a lot of energy and we're looking forward to getting into a game this week.

"There's lads in there that have played so many games this year that they probably needed that little break where there's not as much contact and not as much running.

"But they will be really excited now to get back into it."

During the break from Saints action, Lockett put pen to paper on a new contract.

He has made 19 appearances for the club since graduating from the Academy, and he was namechecked by boss Phil Dowson as a successor to Alex Moon, who is moving to Bayonne this summer.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"I'm obviously delighted to be staying, the club's in a really good place, not just this year but hopefully for years to come as well," Lockett said.

"It's nice when you've got confidence from coaches and I feel like it's something I've had more of this year.

"It gives you the confidence to make mistakes and to go out and play your own game because you know you've got the backing from the coaches.

"It's always been a club that's been good at playing young players and putting that confidence in them, ever since Boydy (Chris Boyd) was here.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"It's such a big thing for a young player, to know you've got the backing of the coaches and that you can go out there and play your own game."

He may not have played too many matches for Saints, but he already has one that will live long in the memory, having popped up to score the winning try against French giants Toulon in December.

"I wouldn't mind another last-minute winner but I'd say it's pretty unlikely because I've not scored many tries in my career!" said the 21-year-old.

"I've got a couple of photos of that try back home - my dad loves it!

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"It was a good experience and probably not one I'll ever have again."

Now Lockett's full focus is on the near future, with the Stormers coming to cinch Stadium at Franklin's Gardens this weekend.

And he said: "Obviously Stormers is a massive one.

"We're a club with such history and we've never played the Stormers so it's something we're really looking forward to and it's a big opportunity.

"We've then got Sale leading into the Premiership and it's a big opportunity for us to keep the ball rolling.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"We've spoken a lot about picking up where we left off and obviously that's something we're going to be massively keen to do.

"When we get towards the business end of the season every game is a big game.

"We've spoken about only having a certain amount of guaranteed games and we need to keep playing our own game and keep the ball rolling to get through to the knockout stages.

"It's awesome to be in this position and it's probably a bit different to the position we've been in during the past few years, but nothing changes. We're still going to go out and play the same way we've been playing the past couple of years. Hopefully that will stand us in good stead."