A few weeks ago a trip to Bradford would have been approached with little fear or trepidation - but in sport fortunes can change overnight.
Second-in-the-table Saints, who visit Oldsal on Sunday afternoon, will be fully aware of the timely shot-in-the-arm the Bulls’ dramatic 34-28 home victory over a stuttering Warrington Wolves on Sunday will have given Francis Cummins’ squad - a result which lifted them off the basement of the First Utility Super League, if only on points difference.
And leading the way were two former St Helens players who will be extra keen to show their old club what they are now missing.
Full back Lee Gaskell helped mastermind the victory and winger Jamie Foster grabbed a try and landed five goals - several when the outcome was in doubt and the pressure at its greatest.
Bradford’s win also came a week after their confidence-boosting 33-20 Tetley’s Challenge Cup fifth round home triumph over the Catalan Dragons and with former NRL and London Broncos forward Antonio Kaufusi having joined them on a month’s loan from the Huddersfield Giants, they look likely to turn a season, which started wih them being docked six points after going into administration, on its head.
But despite only one win in their last four outings and losing key prop Kyle Amor for up to three months due to a knee ligament injury, Saints should have too much fire power for the West Yorkshire outfit who have leaked 402 points in 11 games - possessing the second poorest defensive unit in the competition at this point in time.
Skipper Paul Wellens is expected to return to the St Helens squad after being rested for the Broncos game
Coach Natha Brown explained: ‘Paul hadn’t missed a game this season and had played more football than we had expected so I decided to give him a break.”
Wello’s absence, incidentally, allowed Leeds captain Kevin Sinfield to draw level with his counterpart at the summit of Super League career appearances.
Both have now played 416 matches.