'Unforgettable times' at St Helens for Kevin Naiqama

Family comes before football - and that's the main reason why Saints' centre Kevin Naiqama will be jetting home following Saturday's Old Trafford Grand Final against the Catalans Dragons .

Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 6:42 pm
Updated Wednesday, 6th October 2021, 6:44 pm
Kevin Naiqama celebrates the semi-final victory over Leeds. Picture: SWPix

"Had circumstances been different, I think I would have stayed for at least another season,'' said the 32-year-old Fijian international who admitted that earlier in the year he was on the brink of returning to Australia.

It was triggered by having to watch the birth of his first child through Facetime and to a lesser extent the Covid-19 outbreak, but now he is hoping to add a third Grand Final ring to his Betfred Challenge Cup winner's medal,

Naiqama, a former NRL players with Newcastle Knights, Penrith Panthers and West Tigers, said: "St Helens is the best club side I've played for during my career. I'm proud of what we've achieved in the past few seasons in what have, for me, been amazing and unforgettable times.

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''I didn't expect so much success when I first arrived but it will probably not resonate on me until later in life.''

Saints will also have an old score to settle with the French side who pulled off a stunning 31-30 golden points extra-time victory over the defending champions in the Newcastle Magic Weekend clash in early September.

''It was a strange game but we learned a valuable lesson from that defeat and now hope to achieve redemption.''