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James Wilson scores his first tries for Northampton in a 24-6 victory over Wasps
James Wilson scored his first two tries for Northampton as they continued their perfect start to the Aviva Premiership season with a 24-6 win over Wasps at Franklin's Gardens.
Wilson's double plus 14 points from the boot of Stephen Myler eased the Saints to a fifth victory from their five league matches so far.
Wasps dominated possession in the first half but were ultimately left empty-handed and counting the cost after wing James Bailey - a summer signing from Lyon - was carried off on a stretcher with a suspected broken leg 17 minutes into his first start for the club.
After five minutes of solid defending to open the match, Northampton scored with their first attack as a Wilson combined with Ken Pisi for a scoring move which began inside the Saints' half.
Myler missed the conversion and a subsequent penalty, but at the third attempt made it 8-0 after 12 minutes.
Wasps continued to have most of the ball and eventually got on the scoreboard when Nicky Robinson slotted two penalties through the posts.
Myler replied with three points of his own, though, and - after Northampton lock Samoa Manoa showed his side-stepping abilities to nip past a couple of Wasps tacklers - the fly-half made it 14-6 with another penalty.
On the stroke of half-time Wasps prop Tim Payne was sent to the sin-bin after the video referee was called on. Replays showed Payne dropping his knee on Vasily Artemyev in a ruck, with the home crowd furious a red card was not shown.
After the break Northampton took control and Wilson grabbed his second try of the evening, the New Zealander squirming over after it seemed he had been stopped short of the line. Myler added the conversion.Northampton had gone for the kill when Wasps were a man down but Artemyev, now with his head bandaged, was twice unable to gather offloads inches from the try-line and Soane Tonga'uiha could not quite reach the line after charging out of a ruck five metres from the line.
The visitors survived until Payne's reintroduction but were unable to hold Northampton off for much longer, with Wilson's second try coming in the 55th minute.
Northampton lock Christian Day became the second player to be carried off on a stretcher on 55 minutes with his right lower leg strapped up, while Courtney Lawes and Dylan Hartley also went off injured.
The home side brought Brian Mujati off the bench and the South African tore Wasps' scrum to pieces, winning penalty after penalty to keep the Saints in control as they maintained their impressive start to the season.Aviva Premiership. Click here to bet.
|Sunday 21st September|
|14:00||Newcastle vs Northampton|
|Saturday 27th September|
|15:15||Northampton vs Bath|
|Saturday 4th October|
|15:00||London Irish vs Northampton|
|Saturday 11th October|
|15:15||Northampton vs Sale|
|Saturday 18th October|
|European Rugby Champions Cup|
|17:15||Racing Metro 92 vs Northampton|
|Saturday 25th October|
|17:15||Northampton vs Ospreys|
|Saturday 1st November|
|15:00||Northampton vs Newcastle|
|Saturday 8th November|
|15:00||Scarlets vs Northampton|
|Saturday 15th November|
|15:00||Northampton vs Exeter|
|Saturday 22nd November|
|15:00||Saracens vs Northampton|
|Sunday 30th November|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Northampton|
|Saturday 6th December|
|European Rugby Champions Cup|
|TBC||Benetton Treviso vs Northampton|
|Saturday 13th December|
|TBC||Northampton vs Benetton Treviso|
|Saturday 20th December|
|15:00||Northampton vs Leicester|
|Saturday 27th December|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Northampton|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com