Harry Mallinder Leaves Saints For Japan
Northampton Saints back Harry Mallinder has left Saints in order to pursue a playing opportunity in Japan. The club he will be joining has not yet been announced, but Saints have confirmed that they have the opportunity to resign Mallinder in two years time. The 25 year old burst on the scene with the England Under 20s and Saints, while playing at Fly Half. He made his Saints debut in 2014 and went on to make 83 appearances, scoring 233 points. He Captained the England Under 20s side to World Cup victory in 2016 and his control at Fly Half really caught the eye. Mallinder played his part in some crucial games for Saints, including kicking the winning points against Stade Français to help Saints qualify for the 2017/18 Champions Cup.
Harry Mallinder played a number of positions across the Saints backline and his form had him on the verge of representing England. Eddie Jones had suggested that Mallinder’s future lay in the Full Back position and that is where he ended up playing at Saints. He has stated that he will be heading to Japan to play at Fly Half; a return to his original position. He is one of those players, whose natural skillset makes it hard for them to pin down one position, but it can definitely be argued that his best form has come in the 10 shirt. Recent seasons have seen Mallinder struggle with injuries and this will be a fresh start for the young man. He will be missed around Saints, after making huge contributions on the pitch and off the pitch with the Northampton Saints Foundation. This move could reignite his career and see him return a better player for Saints.
What They Said:
Saints’ Director of Rugby Chris Boyd:
“Harry is a good man and a very popular and talented member of our group, having come through the Academy here with a number of the current first-team squad,”
“He will certainly be missed around the Gardens, but we understand and support Harry’s decision to pursue more regular playing time after enduring an unlucky run of injuries over the last couple of years.
“I am sure many of our supporters will be disappointed to see him leave Northampton, but this is the right move for Harry at this time in his career.
“This wasn’t an easy decision for me, as Northampton has been my Club for the last 14 years.
“I would like to thank everybody associated with the Club. A special thanks to the medical and S&C departments for all their help, the coaches for their continued support and of course the top set of lads within the playing group.
“I’ve been a Saint over half my life and so this is a big change, but one I am very excited about. I am going to Japan to play fly-half, so I’m excited to test myself in a new environment. I can’t wait to get out there for the rugby and cultural challenge.
“I wish the Club and all Northampton supporters the very best for the future, and thank you all for the great support you have given me during my time here.”