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Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder insists his side can improve despite fifth straight win
Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder is adamant his side have not yet hit top gear despite starting the Aviva Premiership season with five straight wins.
The Saints claimed a 24-6 victory over Wasps at Franklin's Gardens on Friday to continue their perfect start to the campaign.
Northampton are enjoying their best ever start to a Premiership season but Mallinder says there are still areas that need to be worked on.
"It is pleasing to win five out of five, but I don't think we have really reached top gear. There is still a little bit more to come from us," he said.
"We defended well to keep them out, but attacking-wise we could sharpen up in a few areas. If we can do that then I am sure we can put some teams to the sword.
"There was a 10- to 15-minute period when we should have scored. Soane Tonga'uiha went through the middle at one stage, then James Wilson (scorer of two tries) had a chance to use his 6ft 4in frame and get a hat-trick.
"We probably wasted a couple of chances there. I would have loved a bonus point, but overall I am happy with the win."
Wilson was stepping in for Ben Foden, who is a long-term injury victim, and Mallinder has been delighted with the way the New Zealander and a raft of new signings have settled into the club.
He added: "Quite a lot of people questioned us in terms of players leaving and whether we could cope.
"The players have come in, Luther Burrell and Dominic Waldouck are playing well as is Rhys Oakley and they are fitting into the way we like to play the game and we are winning rugby matches, which is what it is all about."
Wasps director of rugby Dai Young revealed wing James Bailey was taken to hospital with a suspected broken leg after being carried off on a stretcher 17 minutes into his first start for the club.
Prop Tim Payne was sin-binned on his 250th appearance for the club, with some believing it should have been a red card after the television match official caught him dropping a knee on Vasily Artemyev.
Young said: "We will have a good look at it. That is what they are there for. If that is a yellow card offence you are going to take it."
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|Sunday 21st December|
|14:00||Wasps vs London Irish|
|Friday 26th December|
|15:00||London Irish vs London Welsh|
|Saturday 27th December|
|14:00||Bath vs Exeter|
|14:00||Sale vs Leicester|
|15:00||Newcastle vs Saracens|
|16:30||Harlequins vs Northampton|
|Sunday 28th December|
|14:30||Gloucester vs Wasps|
|Friday 2nd January|
|19:45||Northampton vs Newcastle Falcons|
|Saturday 3rd January|
|14:00||Saracens vs London Irish|
|16:30||Exeter vs Gloucester|
|Sunday 4th January|
|14:00||Wasps vs Sale|
|14:00||Leicester Tigers vs Bath|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Harlequins|
|Friday 9th January|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Saracens|
|Saturday 10th January|
|14:00||Sale vs Northampton|
|15:00||Bath vs Wasps|
|15:15||Harlequins vs Leicester Tigers|
|Sunday 11th January|
|14:00||Newcastle Falcons vs London Welsh|
|15:00||London Irish vs Exeter|
|Saturday 14th February|
|15:00||Leicester vs Gloucester|
|15:00||Northampton vs London Irish|
|15:00||Exeter vs Newcastle|
|Sunday 15th February|
|14:00||Wasps vs Harlequins|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Sale|
|15:00||Saracens vs Bath|
|Saturday 20th December|
|Gloucester 16 - 39 Bath|
|Northampton 23 - 19 Leicester Tigers|
|Saracens 78 - 7 London Welsh|
|Harlequins 15 - 7 Newcastle Falcons|
|Friday 19th December|
|Sale Sharks 18 - 11 Exeter|
|Sunday 30th November|
|Newcastle Falcons 13 - 18 Sale Sharks|
|London Welsh 14 - 43 Northampton|
|London Irish 9 - 21 Gloucester|
|Saturday 29th November|
|Exeter 27 - 19 Saracens|
|Leicester Tigers 18 - 16 Wasps|
|Friday 28th November|
|Bath 25 - 6 Harlequins|
|Sunday 23rd November|
|London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester Tigers|
|Saracens 24 - 31 Northampton|
|Saturday 22nd November|
|London Irish 23 - 33 Bath|
|Exeter 31 - 15 Wasps|
|Friday 21st November|
|Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 Gloucester|
|Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale Sharks|
|Sunday 16th November|
|Wasps 71 - 7 London Welsh|
|Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 Saracens|
|Saturday 15th November|
|Bath 23 - 14 Newcastle Falcons|
|Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London Irish|
|Friday 14th November|
|Gloucester 15 - 22 Harlequins|
|Northampton 18 - 24 Exeter|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com