Home grown Adam Swift will miss a game which is close to his heart ... the Saints v Wigan Warriors derby at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Good Friday,
The St Helens winger picked up a shoulder injury in the 30-6 victory over Hull KR at Craven Park on Friday night and is expected to be sidelined for several weeks.
Swift - scorer of 78 tries in 117 appearance since making his first team debut in a Challenge Cup tie against Widnes Vikings in 2012 - has had his fair share of injuries in recent years but will be gutted at not being able to pull on the famous red vee jersey against the auld enemy in front of a sell-out 18,000 crowd.
Head coach Justin Holbrook said yesterday (Monday): “Adam will be out of action for several weeks but the good news is that, following scans, he does not need surgery.”
Holbrook is keeping his cards close to his chest over his starting line-up but will be faced with several options, including bringing back fully-fit centre Ryan Morgan and moving Tommy Makinson to his favoured wing berth.
But what his plans involve will only be made clear when the team sheet is handed in advance of a match in which early season bragging rights are at stake.
Holbrook enthused: “Like the fans, players and staff of both teams, I’m really looking forward to the game in front of a full house which will add to the excitement - even among the small number of neutrals who will be present.
“It would not matter where the two clubs were standing in the league table because it’s a game everyone is talking about but the fact that both are setting the pace and also playing well adds more excitement to the occasion.”
The 18,000 capacity has been reached almost a week in advance of the game.
Wigan have also sold-out their full allocation of tickets which will mean close to 4,000 travelling fans will be making the short journey over to add to what will be an incredible atmosphere.
The gates will open at 1.45pm with the Red V Cafe bar at the stadium open from noon.
Fans are encouraged to arrive early to gain access to the stadium in good time for the 3.15pm kick-off.