Four-some display

Paul Clough in action for Saints
Paul Clough in action for Saints

FOUR St Helens players lined-up on their home ground when England Knights took on Ireland at Langtree Park on Saturday.

A fifth Saints player, half-back Jonny Lomax, withdrew through injury.

Paul Clough, Mark Flanagan, Lee Gaskell and Gary Wheeler all played in the comfortable 62-4 win.

In a curtain-raiser to England’s tie with the Exiles, the red rose’s second string were rarely troubled as they eased through their mission to catch national boss Steve McNamara’s eye.

Former Saints assistant coach Kieron Purtill was in charge of the England side.

“I was very pleased with it,” he said.

“In the first half the conditions didn’t help us really, and we looked a little bit nervous and tried to be a bit conservative.

“But in the second half, we fell into some better shape and played the kind of rugby we wanted to.”

“If you can perform well there and in Super League then hopefully Steve McNamara will promote you to the senior squad,” Purtill said.

“Last year, we had one game against France and then played Cumbria, but this time we’ll be together for three or four weeks and have a little tournament together.”