Aviva Premiership: Northampton beat Worcester 27-18 to revive play-off hopes
Last Updated: 18/02/13 5:22am
Northampton beat Worcester 27-18 Sixways on Saturday to revive their push for the Aviva Premiership play-offs.
Despite seeing England forwards Dylan Hartley and Courtney Lawes both sin-binned, flanker Samu Manoa's 70th-minute try made the difference before referee Greg Garner awarded Saints a late penalty try.
It was only Saints' second win in their last five league games, but it took them into fifth spot, one point above Gloucester, who tackle Wasps on Sunday.
Hooker Hartley and lock Lawes were punished respectively for killing the ball and a late challenge, yet Northampton had enough in the tank to prevail.
Saints fly-half Stephen Myler kicked five penalties and a conversion for a 17-point haul, while his opposite Andy Goode landed six penalties out of seven, but it was not enough to stave off Warriors' fourth successive Premiership defeat.
Worcester have not won a league game since four days before Christmas, and they remain hovering above the relegation zone, although London Welsh, London Irish and Sale Sharks are all below them.
In the pivotal moment of the game, Manoa was driven over the line by his fellow forwards for the try just seconds after Worcester's former Northampton flanker Neil Best received a yellow card.
Despite Goode slotting another penalty, a last-gasp penalty try which owed everything to a dominant Saints pack rubbed salt into the Warriors' wounds.
Northampton now go forward to next weekend's home game against Bath with renewed confidence, while Worcester face local rivals Gloucester at Kingsholm on Friday night.
Fri 24th Apr
Bath43 - 18London Irish
Sat 25th Apr
Sale Sharks23 - 25Harlequins
Gloucester42 - 40Newcastle Falcons
Leicester Tigers38 - 17London Welsh
Northampton25 - 20Saracens
Sun 26th Apr
Fri 8th May
Harlequins0 - 0Bath
Sat 9th May
Sale Sharks0 - 0Newcastle Falcons
Gloucester0 - 0London Irish
Northampton0 - 0London Welsh
Wasps0 - 0Leicester Tigers
Sun 10th May
Saracens0 - 0Exeter
Sat 16th May
Bath0 - 0Gloucester
Exeter0 - 0Sale Sharks
Leicester Tigers0 - 0Northampton
London Irish0 - 0Wasps
London Welsh0 - 0Saracens
Newcastle Falcons0 - 0Harlequins
Aviva Premiership Round 15
Rugby director Steve Diamond remained upbeat on Aviva Premiership survival after Sale's 26-25 win over London Welsh.
Sale claimed a potentially vital victory in their battle against relegation, winning 26-25 at London Welsh.
Wasps director of rugby Dai Young admitted his side were lucky to come out on top in Sunday's clash with Gloucester.
- Wasps claim important win
- O'Shea: Care was world class
- Harlequins reclaim top spot
- West hails Northampton grit
- Sarries happy with new home
- Gold plays down Bath progress
- Home comforts for Saracens
- Hot Bath make it six on bounce
- Worcester v Saints: Teams
- Quins v Leicester: Teams
- London Welsh v Sale: Teams
- Bath v L Irish: Teams
- Saracens v Exeter: Teams