Soliola backs ex-Wiganer

Sia Soliola in action against Castleford
Sia Soliola in action against Castleford

FORMER Saints icon Sia Soliola is backing his new Canberra team-mate Jeff Lima to help restore the club’s depleted forward stocks.

Much like Soliola himself did in 2015, Lima returns to the NRL from the English Super League after spells at Wigan Warriors and Catalans Dragons desperate to finish his career on a high.

“He’s got a lot of experience, being down there at Souths and Melbourne, and he had a good time in Wigan as well over there in the Super League,” said Soliola, who left Saint after their 14-6 Old Trafford Grand Final victory last year in which he scored one of the crucial tries

“Jeff knows what it takes to get ready for a game and he knows what it requires from a team. He’s good there with all the experience, not just on the footy park but off the field as well.”

Soliola, who spent five seasons at St Helens where he made 117 appearances and scored 31 tries,is looking forward to playing alongside Lima and the latter’s former Dragons colleague, Elliott Whitehead.

The trio follow in the footsteps of ex-Saint James Graham, Sam Burgess and Sam Tomkins who each established themselves in England before finding varying levels of success in the NRL.

Soliola said:’’When I was watched James Graham after he moved to Australia, I saw the damage he was doing,

‘’It made a lot of players in Super League feel they could do the same - and mix it with the best.’’