Brown Hails Performance

NATHAN Brown hailed his side’s “best performance of the season” after they beat Warrington 22-10 on Friday.

Saints were irresistible as they dominated the Wolves in both defence and attack to record their third away win of the season.

“It was definitely our best performance so far,” he said. “They are a really good team and are coached well. To beat them you have to play to a reasonable level and we did that. I thought we would come here and play better than last week and we did.

“They are a terrific opposition and so I’m pleased with the win.”

He continued: “It was good to have Lance Hohaia back as he has a lot of experience. We have changed our halves so many times through injury so we are now looking for stability there.

“People have to understand and this team has to as well, that this St Helens team has to have a different identity. It isn’t the St Helens of 12, 15 years ago as it has totally different personnel. Jonny Lomax is different to Paul Wellens, Jon Wilkin to Sean Long, James Roby to Keiron Cunningham. Paul Sculthorpe doesn’t play anymore; James Graham isn’t here.

“This is a different team and it has to learn its own identity and play its own style which suits the team. As we learn that we will improve.

“I am learning too but have been around long enough to know what is needed. I wasn’t expecting Jonny Lomax to be our number one fullback; I wasn’t expecting Jon Wilkin to be our number seven or perhaps Paul Wellens to move to loose forward. St Helens on the front foot can chew anyone up, but you really see what happens when you are on the back foot. You learn more about the team.

“We need to earn the right to be in those big games by winning our share of games now. And then we can use this stability with players in the right positions to have some control.”

Many pundits have suggested that this Saints team isn’t as strong as previous versions – and Brown had this to say:

“You have to pick the right point in the game to be flamboyant. I know in the past it sometimes has been you score six and we will score seven. We have to do things differently but I don’t want to take the natural talents away.

“Look at Jonny Lomax; I thought he was the best player on the pitch today. His natural talent is full back, it is his position. He will make people sit up with his skills. Most modern full backs play like half backs – the best full backs can do that. Sam Tomkins is the same but him and Jonny possess different skills don’t they? If you want to promote the ball and make your teammates good through silky skills then Jonny is your man.

“Everyone should know that Paul Wellens is very comfortable with where he will play. He will be one of the first players picked – he is important to our club and the dynamics of how we will play. They will both be in the team.

“I know people have panicked about us – the media will do that and the fans want to win all the time. St Helens fans are wonderful; they turn up in their droves and you saw that with the back stand today. St Helens fans are used to winning and I appreciate that. But I understand where the team is trying to get to and it does take time. Tonight was a good result for us and to be able to come here and win shows we are moving forward. We have to back that up next week.”

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