Saints Thump Wolves

SAINTS are 80 minutes away from Old Trafford once again after carving up Warrington 28-6 at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

They produced arguably their most complete performance of the season to shock the Challenge Cup Holders and send their travelling army delirious.

Jonny Lomax and Sia Soliola were superb, but so was Anthony Laffranchi, the two young centres Josh Jones and Gary Wheeler and James Roby.

In fact, it would be unfair to single anyone out in a display of real character – especially in defence where Lance Hohaia must have made more than 30 tackles.

Saints led 12-6 in a cracking but tense first half.

After dominating the opening stages they fell behind to a Brett Hodgson try before Sia Soliola came off the bench and changed the tide.

Firstly, he latched on to a great Paul Wellens pass for the leveller and then scooped up a loose ball to feed Tommy Makinson.

In the second, Makinson grabbed his second as Lomax bamboozled the defence and then James Roby showed fleet-of-foot to do the same.

Francis Meli scored not long after – thanks to Paul Wellens – and that saw Saints into the last four.

Mike Rush made two changes from the side that beat Wigan last weekend – Sia Soliola returning on the bench in place of Joe Greenwood and Gary Wheeler replacing the injured Michael Shenton.

For Warrington, Simon Grix and Tyrone McCarthy came in for Ben Westwood and Ben Harrison.

Saints began the match on the front foot but a dropped ball gave Warrington head and feed in the first set.

Although the ball looked to have been reefed out, it gave the Wolves great field position and they almost scored but Simon Grix dropped it in goal.

It was a good warning for the visitors of how dangerous Tony Smith’s side can be given the chance… but they heeded it and kicked well clear their lines.

On 10 minutes Saints had real pressure on the Wolves’ line, but failed to convert before they were handed the ball again.

Both sides failed to control their sets and likewise turn those opportunities into points.

When the next chance came though, the Wolves made no mistake.

Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook attempted to offload in his own zone, it went forward, and on the resulting set Brett Hodgson ghosted in.

He converted his own try too to make it 6-0 to Warrington.

Saints had a chance with ten minutes to go as they had two sets right on their opposition’s try line – but they failed to get the better of the defence and ultimately lost the ball.

But with six minutes to go Gary Wheeler forced a drop out and Saints were in.

The pack moved the ball forward with little success, but when it went right Lomax combined with Wellens to send in Sia Soliola.

Tommy Makinson levelling it up with a great kick.

Two minutes later Saints were ahead.

Warrington made a critical error in the centre of the field and Sia was on hand to scoop up the loose ball, go 20 yards and send in Makinson – who converted his try with ease.

Tommy had another pop right on the hooter but it just went wide.

In the second half, Saints had an early chance within the first couple of minutes before the Wolves mounted some serious pressure on the defence.

Francis Meli collected Lee Briers’ kick but a couple of minutes later a penalty had Saints scrambling and they kept the Wolves at bay once again.

And Saints turned that defence into attack as Roby and Wilkin combined to put Lomax through – and the youngster made no mistake sidestepping the full back and then sending Makinson in for his second.

Saints withheld three sets on their own line with 20 to go and then forced their second drop out of the night.

And they sniffed blood. A massive run from TP saw the big man offload and Roby danced his way to the line.

Makinson tagging on the extras.

Warrington tried a short kick off and failed, Saints then won a penalty and within a couple of drives Francis Meli was squeezing over in the corner.

The fans went wild and it got better as Makinson tagged on the extras right off the touchline.

Warrington were out on their feet after that clinical score and Saints had the simple and joyous task of closing out the game to a full repertoire of chants from the away end.

Match Summary:

Tries: Hodgson
Goals: Hodgson (1 from 1)

Tries: Soliola, Makinson (2), Roby, Meli
Goals: Makinson (4 from 5)

Wolves: 8
Saints: 8

HT: 12-6
FT: 28-6

REF: Ben Thaler

ATT: 10190



1. Brett Hodgson; 2. Chris Riley, 19. Stefan Ratchford, 4. Ryan Atkins, 5. Joel Monaghan; 6. Lee Briers, 7. Richie Myler; 8. Adrian Morley, 14. Micky Higham, 20. Chris Hill, 11. Trent Waterhouse, 15. Simon Grix, 21. Tyrone McCarthy.
Subs: 9. Michael Monaghan, 10. Garreth Carvell, 16. Paul Wood, 17. Mike Cooper.


1. Paul Wellens; 21. Tommy Makinson, 17. Gary Wheeler, 26. Josh Jones, 5. Francis Meli; 6. Lance Hohaia, 7. Jonny Lomax; 8. Josh Perry, 9. James Roby, 14. Anthony Laffranchi, 11. Tony Puletua, 15. Mark Flanagan, 12. Jon Wilkin.
Subs: 4. Sia Soliola, 10. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 16. Paul Clough 19. Andy Dixon.

Principal Club Partners

LWC Logo

Platinum Club Partners

Kinaxia Logistics logo
Elcons Logo
Astar Recruitment logo

Associate Club Partners

St Helens College logo

Official Club Partners

Box Holders