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Aviva Premiership
Wood rewarded with new Saints deal
ESPNscrum Staff
May 10, 2011
Northampton flanker Tom Wood, Northampton v Newcastle, Aviva Premiership, Franklin's Gardens, Northampton, England, October 30, 2010
Tom Wood has a agreed a new two-year deal with Northampton © Getty Images
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Northampton flanker Tom Wood has been rewarded for an outstanding debut season at Franklin's Gardens with a new two-year contract.

Wood, who joined from Worcester last summer, has played a key a role in the Saints' march to the Aviva Premiership semi-finals, where they face Leicester on Saturday, and the Heineken Cup final.

The openside also made a dent on the international stage this season, playing in all five of England's Six Nations games. He is currently sidelined by a hairline fracture of his right fibula sustained against Gloucester on April 19 but is hopeful that a scan later this week will clear him for the climax to Northampton's season.

"I've definitely enjoyed my time at the Saints," he said. "It couldn't have gone much better really. Working with the players and coaches has been excellent and hopefully this will continue over the next few years.

"I knew I had a challenge to establish myself as a Saints player, especially with the quality players that we have in the back-row, and everything else has been a bonus. I certainly had no hesitation in signing a new contract, and have no intention of going anywhere else."

Director of rugby Jim Mallinder added: "When you look around the Premiership and in Europe it quickly becomes clear that the clubs that are successful over long periods - such as the likes of Leicester, Toulouse, Munster and Leinster - are those whose squads are maintained over successive seasons.

"This is what we are trying to do here at Franklin's Gardens in order to compete at the top end of the Premiership and later stages of the Heineken Cup year in, year out. This is why Tom's new contract is such a boost for the club. When he arrived last summer we knew that we were bringing in a good player, and his commitment and dedication on and off the field have helped him realise some of his potential."

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