Aviva Premiership
Saints hopeful over Foden injury
ESPN Staff
September 14, 2012
Northampton's Ben Foden receives treatment for an ankle injury, Bath v Northampton, Aviva Premiership, The Rec, Bath, September 14, 2012
Saints fulback Ben Foden receives treatment for his ankle injury © Getty Images

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder was quick to play down fears that fullback Ben Foden had broken his leg in the Saints' 18-14 victory over Bath on Friday night.

The England international was injured in an innocuous-looking tackle by Bath's Tom Biggs in the early stages of the second half of their Aviva Premiership clash. Referee Andrew Small called for the TV match official to take a closer look at the incident but he confirmed there was no foul play.

Foden had to be helped from the field and left the ground wearing a surgical boot but Mallinder is hoping for the best. "It's an ankle injury but I don't know a lot more about it than that," he said. "The doctor thinks that it's not broken. We're hopeful it's just a strain."

The match also saw the return to action of another England international, Courtney Lawes, who came off the bench to make his first appearance since February. Mallinder added: "It's great to see Courtney out there. He missed the end of last season with a shin injury and dislocated his elbow pre-season."

Saints boss Jim Mallinder reflects on his side's victory

Mallinder acknowledged his team did not have things their own way, saying: "Bath have a good line-out and got stuck into ours. But any win away from home is pleasing. In terms of performance we're still not playing as we want. We've got a run of two home games coming up though and after a short turn-around - Sunday to Friday - to get the win is pleasing."

Reflecting on what was his side's first defeat of the season, Bath skills coach Brad Davis said: "Our overriding feeling is one of massive disappointment. It was a match of two halves as far as our kicking game was concerned. To be brutally honest, Northampton deserved to win the match. But Abendanon was outstanding, brilliant."

Scrum coach Neil Hatley added: "We weren't accurate enough at the set piece and we conceded early penalties."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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