Double signing boost for Saints
December 13, 2010
South African Brian Mujati has been a rock at the heart of the Saints' front row this season © Getty Images
Northampton front-row forwards Brian Mujati and Brett Sharman have both signed new contracts with the Aviva Premiership leaders.
Saints' announcement comes three days after their Scotland international prop Euan Murray left the club by mutual consent and with immediate effect.
South African prop Mujati, who has won 12 caps for the Springboks, has established himself as part of a fearsome Northampton front row alongside Soane Tonga'uiha and England hooker Dylan Hartley. And hooker Sharman has proved himself a capable understudy to Hartley, currently closing in on 50 first-team appearances.
"It is massively important that we have a squad full of quality, and Brian and Brett have shown they have what it takes to compete at the top end of the Premiership," said Saints rugby director Jim Mallinder.
"They have both improved a lot as players over the past year, and their performances reflect the work they have put in off the field. But they are still young men and we believe they have their best years in front of them, and we're delighted that they will be spending them at Franklin's Gardens."
Mujati was delighted to agree a new deal and hopes to help propel the Saints to success this season. "I've been made to feel very welcome by everyone at the club and in the town," said Mujati. "I'm certainly happy to sign on again with the Saints. We have had some success but we're still improving as a squad and I'm sure that there will be more to come in the near future."
And English-qualified Sharman was equally happy to put pen to paper on a new deal. "It was a very easy decision to sign again," he said. "The club's going in the right direction and I want to be a part of that in the future. The coaches have taught me a lot since I've been here and it seems to be paying off now, and hopefully this will continue in the future."
© ESPN EMEA Ltd
"I am not alone in believing this series could well be decided by who can steal most ball after the tackle." John Taylor previews the Lions' first Test showdown with Australia
"You can keep your Bullitt and French Connection car chases, this was the real thing." Tom Hamilton files his latest Tour Diary from Australia
"O'Driscoll's generosity says so much about the man and the team spirit that Gatland has fostered within the squad." Graham Jenkins reflects on what the Lions' latest win told us
We bring you our pick of the best pictures from around the world in the last seven days with the British & Irish Lions tour and a feast of international rugby taking centre stage