Danny Care was delighted to help David Strettle start his quest for an England recall with a try just 53 seconds into Harlequins' 24-21 victory over Saracens.
Strettle was dropped from the senior England squad after a difficult summer tour to New Zealand, both on and off the field, but he took less than a minute to make his mark on the new season.
Care attacked the blind-side from the back of a five-metre scrum and Strettle stepped his way past the last man to score with his first touch of the ball.
“I was chuffed for ‘Strets’. He is a world-class winger and he should be playing for England,” said Care.
“He had no space at all but a step and a try - that is what he can do week-in and week-out. When you have got Strets on the outside he is always going to score from there.
“Hopefully he can build on that and get back into the England team.”
Care had a key role to play in Ugo Monye’s second-half try, claiming a long lineout and slipping a deft inside ball for the winger to score under the posts.
“I like it when we are playing attacking rugby. That is what we have at Quins in abundance. We love throwing the ball around and scoring tries,” he added.
“It was a great start to get the four points. We knew we could get it if we played well and we showed the pride and determination in the shirt to pull that through in the end.”
Quins struggled to win any lineout ball in the first half but managed to hold an 8-6 lead at the interval with debutant fly-half Nick Evans slotting one penalty to Glen Jackson’s two.
Saracens scored just after half-time with a 60-metre solo try from Adam Powell and then Neil de Kock kept them in touch heading into the closing stages.
But Quins, helped by 11 points from Evans, held on for the victory and boss Dean Richards put it down to his side’s increasing maturity.
“We hardly won a lineout in the first half but we defended very strongly. There are a lot of people who are playing for each other out there,” said Richards.
“We will look at our lineouts and see what went wrong but otherwise I thought it was a good day.
“Two years ago we wouldn’t have won that game because of the decision-making in certain areas. We made some quite mature decisions today at the right times and that is the sign if a side that is getting better.”