The mood in the Saracens camp is high before the visit of in-form Northampton Saints, according to lock Callum Hunter-Hill. 

The Scottish 25-year-old will be packing down beside Andrew Kitchener, who is making his first Gallagher Premiership start for the Men in Black. 

With a raft of Saracens stars on international duty, the arrival of Saints to the StoneX poses a real threat to the league leaders’ 100% winning record. 

But Hunter-Hill is confident Mark McCall’s men are getting even better day-by-day. 

“We’ve had a strong start to the season with the results and we’re improving all the time,” said Hunter-Hill. 

“Morale is great in the group at the moment and everyone is working incredibly hard to make sure we end this block in the best possible position.” 

Phil Dowson’s Saints have lost just once since October 2, overturning a three-point deficit in the last 25 minutes of their clash with Exeter Chiefs last Friday. 

Alex Mitchell and Tommy Freeman were allowed to return to domestic action this week, but England coach Eddie Jones has retained locks Alex Coles and David Ribbans. 

And Sarries will take confidence from the fact that Northampton Saints have been victorious just once on the road since April. 

Kitchener in for starting debut 

There is one change to the Sarries starting XV that won 25-10 away at Bristol Bears last Saturday, Kitchener starting in the league for the first time since his move from Worcester Warriors. 

Mako Vunipola and Jamie George are involved for Eddie Jones’ England on Saturday, so a front row of Robin Hislop, Theo Dan and Marco Riccioni lead the pack. 

Ben Earl captains the side once again at openside, while Andy Christie and Jackson Wray feature with Theo McFarland and Billy Vunipola facing Georgia and Japan respectively. 

Ivan van Zyl and Alex Goode will combine as the half-backs, up against Fin Smith and the in-form Mitchell. 

Alex Lozowski and Elliot Daly are named in the midfield, with Sean Maitland and Alex Lewington starting on the wings. 

Max Malins was at his sparkling best against Bears and will hope to keep the momentum going at full-back. 

Hugh Tizard is available to make an impact from the bench, and Gareth Simpson and Tom Howe could both get more minutes since their move from Warriors. 

Saracens: 15 Max Malins, 14 Alex Lewington, 13 Elliot Daly, 12 Alex Lozowski, 11 Sean Maitland, 10 Alex Goode, 9 Ivan van Zyl; 1 Robin Hislop, 2 Theo Dan, 3 Marco Riccioni, 4 Callum Hunter-Hill, 5 Andrew Kitchener, 6 Andy Christie, 7 Ben Earl (c), 8 Jackson Wray

Replacements: 16 Ethan Lewis, 17 James Flynn, 18 Alec Clarey, 19 Ollie Stonham, 20 Hugh Tizard, 21 Gareth Simpson, 22 Josh Hallett, 23 Tom Howe  

Northampton Saints: 15 George Furbank, 14 Tommy Freeman, 13 Fraser Dingwall (c), 12 Rory Hutchinson, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Fin Smith, 9 Alex Mitchell; 1 Alex Waller, 2 Mike Haywood, 3 Paul Hill, 4 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 5 Alex Moon, 6 Angus Scott-Young, 7 Sam Graham, 8 Juarno Augustus 

Replacements: 16 Robbie Smith, 17 Emmanuel Iyogun, 18 Ehren Painter, 19 Brandon Nansen, 20 Kayde Sylvester, 21 Tom James, 22 Matt Proctor, 23 James Ramm