SAINTS proved they were no April Fools with a nine-try demolition of Castleford Tigers at Langtree Park.
Josh Perry and Joe Greenwood each bagged a brace in a fine 48-18 victory.
Saints led 26-0 at half time as they completely overwhelmed their opponents.
Continuity was the name of the game with 1, 6, 7 and 9 playing consecutive games and it showed as they directed Nathan Brown’s pack around the field with aplomb.
Castleford fought back in the second half but Saints were always on top and four excellent tries underlined their superiority.
Such a performance was perhaps unexpected by the ‘neutral’ given the number of changes made to the sides that lost their respective derbies on Good Friday.
Mark Percival moved on to the wing to cover Ade Gardner’s absence whilst Adam Swift came in for Francis Meli.
Joe Greenwood was named on the bench once again and there was a debut for James Tilley too.
Saints forced a drop out early doors and were unlucky on the last tackle as Sia Soliola opted for the powerplay.
But on their next attack they foraged over. Saints won a penalty as Sia was tackled without the ball and Jon Wilkin duly fed Mark Flanagan for a great try next to the posts.
Josh Perry then plunged over for his first in the red v on 20 minutes to increase the lead.
It was all Saints at this point and ‘LMS’ underlined that with a rampaging run through the cover tackles to make it 16-0.
Percival adding his third conversion of the afternoon.
Saints then won their fourth drop out of the match and duly notched their fourth try – Joe Greenwood latching on to Paul Wellens’ pass.
But Justin Carney hit Wello late and turned him over; getting himself on report as a result.
Seconds later Tommy Makinson put in a fine tackle on James Clare to stop a certain score in the corner.
And Saints’ dominance was underlined two minutes before the hooter with Greenwood’s second.
Josh Jones set it up with some superb dancing feet, but it was Flash’s great delayed pass that bamboozled the defence.
Saints 26-0 up at the break.
The lead was increased early in the second half as the home side went the full length of the field.
Greenwood pounced on an error and got it away to Percival who then offloaded under pressure to Makinson.
Percival tagging on the two points.
And Makinson laid a perfect pass on for Swift’s first of the season moments later – converted by Percival.
James Tilley came on and made a great run but Daryl Clarke got Cas going after an error in the middle of the field.
And Rangi Chase then flipped it to Carney for the Tigers’ second try.
But normal service was resumed when Perry stretched out, over his head, for his second.
James Clare pulled one back for the Tigers but it was always Saints day.
And that was emphasised by Mark Flanagan’s wonder pass to Turner to conclude the scoring.
Tries: Flanagan, Perry (2), McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Greenwood (2), Makinson, Swift, Turner
Goals: Percival (6 from 9)
Tries: Clark, Carney. Clare
Goals: Ellis (3 from 3)
REF: Robert Hicks
21. Tom Makinson; 30. Mark Percival, 3. Jordan Turner, 19. Josh Jones, 26. Adam Swift; 1. Paul Wellens, 12. Jon Wilkin; 8. Josh Perry, 36. Stuart Howarth, 16. Paul Clough, 4. Sia Soliola, 15. Mark Flanagan, 10. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook.
Subs: 14. Anthony Laffranchi, 24. Joe Greenwood, 25. Alex Walmsley, 32. James Tilley.
19. Jordan Tansey; 1. Richard Owen, 3. Michael Shenton, 2. Justin Carney, 23. James Clare; 6. Rangi Chase, 7. Jamie Ellis; 8. Jonathan Walker, 9. Daryl Clark, 25. Keith Mason, 17. Oliver Holmes, 18. Jordan Thompson, 12. Weller Hauraki.
Subs: 10. Craig Huby, 14. Jake Emmitt, 16. Nathan Massey, 24. Charlie Martin.