Saints reserves spread the rugby league gospel

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Saints Reserves will be travelling more than 700 miles in the next couple of weeks, helping to spread the RL gospel and at the same time getting into shape for the new season.

Coach Ian Talbot will take his side to Newcastle on Sunday, February 5 (3pm) and then to South Wales for a date with the Ironmen a week later on February 12 (kick off TBC).

They will heading for Kingston Park, Tyneside, to play in a testimonial match for Thunder's Joe Brown - the centre celebrating 10 years at a club where he has played a major role, both on and off the field, in promoting the sport in the area.

Joe said: “Saints are a huge club so it will be great experience to test ourselves against them.

“I know Craig Richards, who is involved with their U19s and their development through Jamaica and we've always kept in touch

“I spoke to him about supporting my testimonial and Saints have been awesome all along

“Hopefully they will send a strong team but whoever we play it will be a massive game as far as we are concerned.

Talbot said: “We will travel to Newcastle and South Wales in what will be two tough challenges for the lads against League 1 opposition.

“Newcastle had a good season last year and finished with silverware after winning the League 1 shield.

“We will be going there to help Joe celebrate his well-earned testimonial.”

He went on: “The newly-named South Wales Ironmen are looking to further develop the game and we hope to be able to assist them.

“Having seen first-hand the skill and ability of Regan Grace and Calvin Wellington, we know there is lots of talented rugby players down there.”

Talbot added: “The Reserves competition was a complete success for us last season with several young players stepping up.

“It also provided regular playing opportunities to fringe first team players as they returned to form or fitness.

“On the back of the success that most of the lads had in the under 19s competition it will be good to see them all play at reserves level and make the next step in the development of their careers."

Tickets for the game against Newcastle at Kingston Park are priced at £7 for adults and £3 for under 16s.