ON the whole, we were pretty pleased with the result and our performance against London Broncos over the weekend – given that the opposition have been playing well, and have numerous attacking threats, it gave us a huge amount of confidence to keep them pointless.
One thing that we are doing at the moment is creating a lot of opportunities with ball in hand. We have players who like to run at the defensive line, and in doing this we are constantly asking questions of the opposition’s defence.
However, if we are being hyper-critical, we are also guilty of not taking quite a few chances. This wasn’t important on Friday night, as we were winning comfortably, but come the play-offs, when opportunities to score become less frequent, it will be extra important that we are more clinical.
We again had some strong individual performances with Louie McCarthy Scarsbrook in particular having a very good game.
Players like Louie are a rare commodity in rugby league. I don’t mean that there are very few Cockneys with a voice loud enough to break the sound barrier, but the fact that he is very strong and very quick for a man of his size.
Louie is one of those players who I feel will continue to get better the older he gets. He’s learning more and more each week about his game, and in my opinion, has all the attributes to go on and become an international front rower.
n OUR last fixture of the regular season takes us to the DW stadium to face our local rivals Wigan.
This game will determine who we play in the first week of the play-offs the following week. A victory would see us cement third place and travel to Warrington, while defeat would more than likely see us returning to the DW for a repeat fixture.
We are level on points with Catalans, who are at home to Bradford, and on current form you would tend to think that Catalans will be too strong for the Bulls.
Our record against Wigan this season has been poor, with us losing all three encounters so far, but that will count for nothing as we enter the latter stages of the season.
We know we need to perform well, and are very much looking forward to challenging ourselves against the recently crowned league leaders.
n LAST week, the club announced the signings of eight junior players from the scholarship scheme, Dave Hewitt, Adam Saunders, Oliver Davies, Ross McCauley, Tom Calland, Joe Ryan, Daniel Abram and Matthew Fleming.
I know personally the joy and excitement that these young players will be feeling, and they have obviously worked hard to get to this stage.
But, having been in their situation, I also know that this is where the hard work really starts, as they will all have to make sacrifices to develop as players and as people.
Hopefully, they can continue to make improvements, and one day pull on the redvee in the Saints first team. I’d like to wish them all the best as they start on their exciting journey.
n FINALLY, I would like to mention another fantastic publication recently out, following on from last week and Saints Verses. Another local lad, and huge St Helens supporter Dom McCormack, has completed a book called The Last Days of Knowsley Road.
It is a photographic record of the ground in its final days before the demolition began.
Dom, like a lot of St Helens supporters, recognises that Knowsley Road became more than just a regular rugby ground, but was somewhere that we had experienced and shared some wonderful moments with family, friends and loved ones.
Over the past week, I’ve sat down and read through it on numerous occasions, in doing so have recollected so many great times I’ve had, not just as a player, but as a young lad on the terraces.
To have this book is to have a visual record of this most important of places before it was removed from our lives. I would urge all fans of Rugby League, and in particular St Helens, to read this book.
n Quote of the Week: If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
Come on you Saints – Wello