Meli: Lance is a big boost

Francis Meli
Francis Meli

FRANCIS Meli has praised the impact of fellow Kiwi Lance Hohaia on Saints young stars.

The pair played together at the New Zealand Warriors and Meli believes his experience is a massive lift to half-backs Jonny Lomax and Lee Gaskell.

“I think he’s a big bonus and he takes a lot of pressure off Jonny Lomax and Lee Gaskell and they can learn from Lance,” said Meli.

“It’s hard giving that sort of pressure to young boys. But we’ve got that experienced half-back that we’ve been looking for over the last couple of years.

“We had a few injuries last year, but now we’ve got those players and it’s time to make the most of it.”

Meanwhile, Meli believes there is no place for complacency if Saints are to turn Langtree Park into a fortress.

“We’ve got to start the season well and the new ground isn’t going to win games for us,” he told BBC Radio Merseyside .

“It’s easy for other teams to come to a new stadium and play, so we’ve got to earn the right to turn up and start winning games.”