NATHAN Brown praised Luke Thompson for his “sensational” debut for the club at the Stoop on Saturday.
The 18-year-old prop made his bow on his birthday to become Saints’ seventh player from the junior ranks to don the Red V for the first time in 2013.
“I thought for an 18-year-old he was sensational,” Brown said. “He was a real highlight of the game. At one stage we hadn’t had the ball for 10 minutes but he stepped up and wanted to carry it from the first play. He has a good engine for sure.
“Mark Percival isn’t a winger by trade and I thought his wing play was great too. Josh Jones had a good game as well. If we would have turned up on his line breaks we would have got the win, he was very dangerous.”
Saints went down 21-14 away at the Broncos in a game that was in doubt until the final stages.
Brown looked at the positives: “We competed hard again as we have in our last three league losses, but our decision making in key areas obviously wasn’t what we would like. It was three tries all and we felt we created enough chances to win some games.
“It’s tough as we have people out of position and then we lost Adam Swift to what looks like a really nasty caulk. Tommy Makinson went from full back to wing and then Luke Charnock went there. He’s been playing five-eighth in the under 19s.
“We are where we are at the moment and these younger players will get better from experience. You don’t want to play people out of position but we are where we are. We will get the benefit out of it further down the line, but people don’t see that as there is a bit of pain at the moment, but it will come.
“Everyone would like the young players to be playing like seasoned internationals – but it doesn’t happen overnight. They have to watch, learn and train hard and the team needs to learn what their strengths are too. We will get there eventually.”