Modest Matavesi hoping to produce more moments of magic for Saints

Sam Matavesi is extremely modest when discussing his recent moment of magic at Kingston Park.

By Tom Vickers
Thursday, 27th January 2022, 5:39 pm
Updated Thursday, 27th January 2022, 5:40 pm

Back on January 8, the hot-stepping hooker showcased his skills as he slalomed through the Newcastle Falcons defence before offloading to Courtnall Skosan for a key score.

It was a brilliant piece of improvisation from Matavesi and opened the door for a big 44-8 win for Saints.

The Fiji star laughs as he looks back on a clip that he can add to his highlight reel.

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And when asked if he can do it again in the weeks and months ahead, Matavesi said: "I hope so!

"I can never guarantee it, but I hope so.

"What happened was that I got the ball and their prop overran it a bit.

"I was chatting to Dows (Saints forwards coach Phil Dowson) after the game and he told me it was a four on two and screaming 'pass the ball'.

Sam Matavesi

"Obviously I didn't pass it, I stepped and luckily it worked out alright!"

Matavesi is a key man in the Saints front row, making the No.2 shirt his own since arriving at the club in December 2019.

But his modest streak continues when asked about his own form.

"It's been okay," he said.

"Every week you want to be 8/10 or 10/10 but that isn't always going to happen.

"But as long as the set piece is going well and I can get around the park and have an effect, that's me."

Matavesi and Saints are now preparing to face Worcester Warriors at Sixways on Saturday.

It is a vital Gallagher Premiership game for Saints, who currently sit fifth in the standings, three points behind fourth-placed Gloucester.

"The biggest thing about Worcester is that they've had some changes in their backroom staff and they'll be out to impress him (Steve Diamond, who will be director of rugby from next season).

"It's a good chance for them to have a game under their belt in front of a new DOR so it's not going to be the same team we played here at the start of the year.

"It will be a test, like every game.

"It's very important for us to win this weekend, especially after a disappointing Ulster game and not getting over to Racing.

"If we can back up our performance at Newcastle against Worcester, it would be massive for us.

"We've got a week off next week and we want to head into that with a win."

Saints were hit by a Covid-19 outbreak last week, forcing the cancellation of the Champions Cup game at Racing 92.

But Matavesi has managed to stay clear of any issues.

"It's been a bit of a different week but I can't complain," said the 30-year-old.

"I've been absolutely fine and I've been on extended dog walks and relaxing at home.

"I'm excited to be back playing this weekend and everyone is.

"It's a chance to get back into a league that we had a good win in last time, at Newcastle, and that's what we're going to be looking for this week."