Yates’ view: Fages will be difficult to dislodge from Saints starting line-up

Theo Fages masterminded Saints win in the south of France
Theo Fages masterminded Saints win in the south of France

Nothing can give an up and coming young player a bigger buzz than masterminding victory in the country of his birth.

French half back Theo Fages stepped up to the plate in devastating fashion as St Helens ended a three-match losing Super League streak by toppling the Catalans Dragons in Pepignan on Saturday .

His audacious off-load - some may also describe it as out of this world - paved the way for winger Jack Owens’ first try of the season and enabled under-pressure Saints to notch a 28-24 win.

And Fages’ 80-minute performance vindicated coach Keiron Cunningham’s faith in the 22-year-old who joined the club ahead of the 2016 season.

He could hardly be described as a regular 12 months ago, facing competition from Luke Walsh and Jordan Turner for a spot in the halves, but his more than competent display at the Stade Gilbert Brutus suggested that he will be a difficult player to dislodge in the future.

Head coach Keiron Cunningham said: “Theo has been brilliant since he came to the club. You forget how young he is, he still is a baby and lots of learning to do but he competes really hard.

“Not only did he set up the match-winning try but he scrambled at the end to make a defensive play and saved a try.’’

Saints. too, will be delighted at the way led from the front and gave them the platform to secure a much-needed win.

A fourth defeat in succession didn’t bear thinking about and while nobody will be counting their chickens before they hatch at the Totally Wicked Stadium, Saints will go into Friday night’s home game against Warrington Wolves is a far better frame of mind.

Hopefully, they will build on the plus points achieved in the south of France - a bizarre sort of match which include a seven-try first half feast followed by a two-try famine after the break.