Leicestershire

The star in George North starts to appear for Saints

Northampton paid a fine of £60,000 to the Premiership for allowing George North to play for Wales outside the official international window last month, and if it made a nonsense of the league’s collective policy on the subject, everyone else appears to believe it was a stand worth taking.

Rugby round-up: Owen Williams show put in shade

A superb performance by Owen Williams, the young replacement at fly-half for Toby Flood, in Leicester's 30-23 Premiership victory over Sale Sharks was overshadowed by allegations from Richard Cockerill that the visitors “cheated” at the scrum.

Leicester 41 Montpellier 32: Miles Benjamin delighted to accept French

The English clubs may be turning their backs on the most compelling annual tournament in the union game but at least they are showing the good grace to wait until the end of the season. The French appear to be engaged in a mass skedaddle with two thirds of the campaign still to run. Racing Métro, Perpignan, Toulouse... between them, three of the biggest teams in the country have just made a mockery of the idea that they are still remotely interested in European competition.

The Twickenham File: Chris Robshaw's men lack killer bite when they

Where do you consider England's traditional strengths lie? That's right, the set-piece, the less than glamorous areas on which success is founded. Where did it go wrong for England yesterday when the outcome hung in the balance, midway through the second half? That's right, the set-piece or, with regard to the scrum, the lack of it.

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Gavin Henson capitalises on Bath’s display of coaching strength

Bath’s high-profile coaching group led by Gary Gold arrived midway through 2012, so by necessity they spent last season, when the Rec crew finished seventh out of 12 in the Premiership, juggling their predecessors’ resources. Not any more. As Matt Banahan, the scorer of Bath’s second try in Saturday’s 27-20 win over Leicester, put it: “You have always got a settling in period with coaches and with players. Coaches obviously want their squad and the players they want to come in, and sometimes they are working with players when they would rather have different ones. So this year we have had that teething out of the way and we have got a squad we want to build on.”