Speculation that powerhouse prop Alex Walmsley is to leave Saints has been nailed on the head ... by the player himself.
The 27-year-old former Batley forward, whose existing contract ends at the end of the 2018 season, insisted yesterday: “I’m not going anywhere unless there is something being talked about above my head.
“The club have not spoken to me and neither have I talked to Castleford. I love St Helens, the players and all the staff and it has been the same since I first arrived.”
Ironically, he has been linked with the club which Saints face in the opening fixture of the Super 8s at the Jungle tonight and Big Al will be hoping he can help reverse the results of the previous two fixtures this year at the same venue - a 53-10 drubbing in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup and a 16-12 Super League setback a few weeks later.
He said: “Castleford current top the table and there is a reason why they are 10 points clear of their nearest rivals, Leeds Rhinos ... they have been the most consistent side in the competition so far and we will have to be at our best to pick up what are two vital points.
“It is a tough test for us but we are not going there just to make up the numbers.”
Walmsley feels Saints are in the kind of form to earn a top four spot, especially with players like James Roby, Matty Smith and Jon Wilkin, who have big match experience, in their ranks.
Success will also enhance his own chances of making the England squad for the end of season World Cup - and hopes his performance in a Saints shirt catches the eye of international boss Wayne Bennett.
“It is a dream of mine to represent my country and there is no bigger stage to play on than a World Cup tournament,” he said.