NATHAN Brown is hoping Saints’ 30-22 win over Leeds will kick start a good summer period.
Speaking after the ‘come from behind’ victory at Headingley on Monday night he said the team should get a lot of confidence from the result.
“I was disappointed at first as I expected us to play well tonight and we didn’t for the first 20 minutes,” he said. “I thought we did well to come back from there. At 16-0 I wasn’t sure where we were heading.
“We had a lot of good experienced players back and the younger players had that experience around them too. We also had players in positions which they weren’t foreign to. We haven’t been able to do that in the last five weeks – not by choice, just by the state of the squad. I expected us to do well as a result but at 16-0 I was thinking something else.
“But we fought well and came back. Leeds are good team and we should get a lot of confidence from it. You don’t fluke four or five Grand Final wins. They had a couple of handy players not playing but had Sinfield, Burrow, McGuire – cornerstones of the club out there. We have Warrington and Huddersfield next and one win doesn’t make a summer but we would like tonight to be the start of a new section for us.”
One of the turning points in the match was the introduction of Alex Walmsley and Brown once again paid tribute to the big man.
“Alex seems to do something every time he comes on. The tempo of the game always seems to lift in our favour. He is a unique sort of player and generally when he comes on something goes our way. He was semi pro until Keary (Jon Kear) produced him and I have made a living over here off Keary and taking his players! He knows how to find them and I keep ringing asking if he has any more.
“I was also pleased with Luke Thompson. You wouldn’t think he has just turned 18 – him and young Mark Percival – it is credit to Derek Traynor, Steve Leonard, Neil Kilshaw and the boys like Ian Talbot behind the scenes.
“Paul Wellens also played well; he means a lot to the team with his experience. He is held in high esteem and does the things that are needed from a captain. He is an actions man rather than talk. The winning try for Luke – that came from Wellens playing at six.
“I’m looking forward to seeing our next performance.”
Brown said he is hopeful that Jonny Lomax could return within the next three to four weeks.
James Roby, on the other hand, could have played on Monday “if it was a Grand Final”.
“There’s no point rushing him,” Brown added. “But if he is 100 per cent fit next week he will come back in and play.”