Saints boss Boyd: No one feels more frustrated and disappointed than we do

Chris Boyd insists no one feels more 'frustrated and diappointed' with Saints' recent form than the players and coaches.

By Tom Vickers
Saturday, 12th March 2022, 7:00 am

The black, green and gold have suffered three agonising defeats on the spin, following on from the derby-day loss at Leicester Tigers.

Saints have pushed Sale Sharks, Exeter Chiefs and, most recently, Gloucester all the way before losing out late on.

And though Boyd understands the frustration of the fans, he says those in the Saints dressing room are feeling the pain more acutely than anyone.

Chris Boyd

"People are disappointed and frustrated but I can promise them they don't feel as much disappointment and frustration as we do," Boyd said.

"There's nothing we're seriously concerned about as being terminal, we're just a bit loose and a bit ragged and it's coming back to haunt us.

"We felt those last three games that have been one-score games, we could have won all three of them.

"We're really disappointed.

“When you’ve got a philosophy and an approach to a game the most important thing is that everyone is still rowing the boat in the same direction together.

"When you have had three or four losses in a row like we have you have got to make sure to check in that: are we still aligned, do we still believe in what we are doing, do we still trust each other to deliver a lot of the parts that are going on? What are the issues, how are we going to deal with them?

“We have actually had a couple of very good conversations in the past couple of weeks around that.

"To the credit of the players, they are incredibly frustrated and disappointed but there is no lip on the ground.

"You have just got to roll your sleeves up and do it. Everybody wants to win every game don’t they?”

Saints have not won at cinch Stadium at Franklin's Gardens since beating Bath in early December.

And ahead of Sunday's home clash with Wasps, Boyd said: "We always want to play well enough to win and we treasure Franklin's Gardens as a great place to play.

"Franklin's Gardens is special, but every time the boys pull on a Saints jersey, they want to make people proud and win.

"We've had some pretty good tussles with Wasps over the past three or four years.

"They're a very dangerous side when they get their game going.

"Like everyone, they've been affected by international call-ups and a plethora of injuries.

"They're a good side with really good individuals so it's a tough assignment."

Since Boyd arrived at Saints in the summer of 2018, they have tried to play a free-flowing style of rugby, which has sometimes left them open to opposition sucker punches.

But Boyd does not want to see his side abandon their attacking philosophy, instead insisting they can be even more expansive at times.

“I worry that we are too conservative in the back third of the field and don’t take enough opportunity that is presented to us," he said.

"We’re now moving the game through the middle third of the field quite nicely, we’ve got to get better at both ends of the field and it doesn’t necessarily mean playing less. It might mean playing more.

“It depends what you think risk is. The try that Tom Collins ultimately scored last Saturday started from our five-metre line but came from three or four passes into space.

"If you’ve got space you’ve got to use it and I don’t consider that risky play.

“If you ask me what went wrong, we dealt with their maul for the first 60 minutes and then failed to do so at the end.

"If we are going to be critical of ourselves they scored five tries and only required two rucks to score five tries.

"We made some catastrophic defensive mistakes. We got a line out horribly wrong at the start of the game.”