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Aviva Premiership: Northampton ruin riot against London Irish
Northampton moved into fourth place in the Aviva Premiership thanks to a resounding 40-14 victory over London Irish at Franklin's Gardens.
Jamie Eilliott grabbed a hat-trick of tries to help the surging Saints, who have now won four of their last five league outings, leapfrog over play-off rivals Gloucester and Wasps in the table.
Samu Manoa, Soane Tonga'uiha and GJ van Velze also touched down for the hosts as they avenged the 39-17 defeat they suffered in the reverse fixture earlier this season.
Guy Armitage did grab a consolation score late-on for the Exiles, who had threatened in the first half before fading after the break.
Indeed, Jon Fisher and Pat Phibbs were both held up on the try-line as the visitors were only able to turn their periods of extended pressure into three penalties from Tom Homer.
Northampton, in contrast, had no problems putting points on the board. Elliott's first of the afternoon came from Stephen Myler's long pass before flanker Manoa was able to wriggle over from close range in the 40th minute.
Myler converted both tries to make it 14-9 at the break and the lead was extended almost immediately in the second half when Tonga'uiha crashed over.
The bonus point try arrived before the hour mark when another lineout drive - helped by Brian Mujati, who came off the bench to make his first appearance in 2013 - led to the pack peeling to the left for Van Velze to finish.
James Wilson put in Elliott for his second and the in-form winger completed his hat-trick, making it five tries in his last two games, when he picked up Ryan Lamb's cross-field kick and touched down out wide.
Armitage's effort was sandwiched in between Elliott's final two tries, and was no more than Irish deserved for their efforts in a losing cause.
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Aviva Premiership Table
|Friday 5th September|
|19:45||Northampton vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 6th September|
|14:00||Sale vs Bath|
|14:00||Saracens vs Wasps|
|15:00||Leicester vs Newcastle|
|16:30||London Irish vs Harlequins|
|Sunday 7th September|
|14:00||London Welsh vs Exeter|
|Friday 12th September|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Saracens|
|Saturday 13th September|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Sale|
|15:00||Bath vs London Welsh|
|15:15||Exeter vs Leicester|
|Sunday 14th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Northampton|
|15:00||Newcastle vs London Irish|
|Friday 19th September|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Exeter|
|Saturday 20th September|
|14:00||Sale vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Wasps|
|15:00||London Irish vs Saracens|
|15:15||Bath vs Leicester|
|Sunday 21st September|
|14:00||Newcastle vs Northampton|
|Friday 26th September|
|19:45||London Welsh vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 27th September|
|15:00||Leicester vs London Irish|
|15:00||Saracens vs Sale|
|15:15||Northampton vs Bath|
|Sunday 28th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Newcastle|
|14:00||Exeter vs Harlequins|
|Friday 3rd October|
|19:45||Bath vs Saracens|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com