x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Saints are flying at the top

Northampton roared to the top of the Premiership table for at least 24 hours last night as they cruised past the basement side Leeds Carnegie.

Northampton Saints roared to the top of the Premiership table for at least 24 hours last night as they cruised past the basement side Leeds Carnegie 30-10. Four tries inside the opening 32 minutes put Northampton in charge of an one-sided encounter and ensured they usurped Wasps to be at the summit, though the London side can regain the position today in their match at London Irish.

Fly-half Shane Geraghty got the first try, before Jon Clarke crossed twice and Chris Ashton also got on the scoresheet. Geraghty also kicked a penalty and two conversions to finish with a personal points tally of 12 points. Ceiron Thomas accounted for all of winless Leeds' points as he scored a try, a penalty and a conversion. In yesterday's other action Worcester picked up their second win of the season as they defeated Sale 24-18.

Willie Walker kicked 14 points for the home side to steer them to victory, with Marcel Garvey and Miles Benjamin scoring tries. The Sharks crossed the line through Mathew Tait and Chris Bell. Meanwhile, two late penalties from Nick Evans helped Harlequins salvage a 17-17 draw at Newcastle on Friday. Newcastle went 14-3 ahead in the first half with tries from Tane Tu'ipulotu and Tim Swinson, both converted by Jimmy Gopperth.

Evans reduced the deficit with an early second-half penalty and an Ugo Monye try took Quins to within three points. A long-range Gopperth penalty stretched Newcastle's lead, but Evans struck two penalties but missed a drop-goal. Today's other game sees Saracens play host to Gloucester. gcaygill@thenational.ae