Saints Back On Top

PAUL Wellens and Mark Percival grabbed a brace apiece as Saints eased past Castleford 38-16.

In a much improved performance they denied an in form Tigers who threw everything they had at them in the first half.

Saints led 22-4 at the break as they took full advantage of the chances that came their way.

On balance it was an even opening 40, but Wellens alongside Luke Walsh and the effectual Lance Hohaia led Nathan Brown’s men to a solid foundation.

Cas had their moments but couldn’t keep control of the ball.

In the second Saints controlled matters and Mark Percival early try put the scoreline beyond the Tigers.

He then notched his second after Walsh had capped a great show with his fifth of the season – to send Saints top.

Saints welcomed Jon Wilkin back into the line-up but were missing Alex Walmsley through suspension.

Michael Shenton, Marc Sneyd, Jake Webster, Daryl Clark and Andy Lynch all returned for Cas.

Both sides began with good kick chases before errors erased any hopes of either building up some momentum.

But then Saints struck out of nowhere in the sixth minute.

Mark Flanagan broke down the right hand side, offloaded Jamie Lyon-esque and Tommy Makinson showed great pace and awareness to round his man.

Walsh wide with the extras.

Saints almost struck again on 13 minutes and then a minute later Castleford rampaged through the middle but failed to find a man with the pass.

Handling errors blighted both sides’ progression up the field but the Tigers took advantage when Saints looked more likely.

Lance Hohaia broke through but lost the ball and seconds later, on the last, a sweeping move saw Kirk Dixon get over in the corner.

Saints hit back on 25 minutes. Hohaia darted to the line; found Paul Wellens on his inside and the fullback showed a great sidestep to bamboozle Luke Dorn.

Walsh with the conversion.

And five minutes later a simple move after Saints forced a drop out saw Jordan Turner increase the lead.

Walsh making it 16-4 after 30 minutes.

The Tigers continued to come and Saints had Matty Dawson to thank after he defended a high kick right on his line.

But Saints landed a killer blow right on half time and it came from absolutely nothing.

Walsh sent a kick over for Makinson to chase but James Clare collected with ease.

To his credit Tommy didn’t give it up though and he tackled the Cas’ winger forcing him towards touch.

Clare had no option to throw it inside – but Luke Dorn missed the bouncing ball and Wellens duly collected for his second of the afternoon.

Walsh tagging on his third kick for Saints to lead 22-4 at half time.

Saints forced a drop out early doors in the second half and took full advantage.

Firstly, Wellens was held up over the line, then a last gasp tackle denied James Roby under the sticks.

And then, when the ball went right, Willie Manu was held up too.

But on the last, it came left, Castleford failed to deal with a kick and Mark Percival crossed.

Walsh kicking the extras.

Percival could have had his second in the 57th minute but was denied right in the corner.

But up popped Luke Walsh with 15 minutes to go to put the game to bed.

Castleford knocked the ball on and on the free play the scrum half kicked through to Makinson – he was tackled without the ball – but Walsh followed it up.

Moments later Wellens went through the middle and Mark Percival nudged his second.

Marc Sneyd and Luke Dorn scored late consolations for Cas but Saints were always on top.

Match Summary:


Tries: Makinson, Wellens (2), Turner, Percival (2), Walsh

Goals: Walsh (5 from 8)


Tries: Dixon, Sneyd, Dorn

Goals: Sneyd (2 from 3)


Tigers: 3

Saints: 4

HT: 22-4

FT: 38-16

REF: Richard Silverwood

ATT: 12,648



17. Paul Wellens; 2. Tommy Makinson 3. Jordan Turner, 22. Mark Percival, 26. Matty Dawson; 6. Lance Hohaia, 7. Luke Walsh; 8. Mose Masoe, 9. James Roby, 10. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 12. Jon Wilkin, 15. Mark Flanagan, 11. Sia Soliola.

Subs: 13. Willie Manu, 27. Greg Richards, 28. Luke Thompson, 33. Andre Savelio.


6. Luke Dorn; 2. Kirk Dixon, 4. Jake Webster, 3. Michael Shenton, 24. James Clare; 7. Marc Sneyd, 26. Liam Finn; 8. Andy Lynch, 14. Daryl Clark, 10. Craig Huby, 16. Oliver Holmes, 12. Weller Hauraki, 11. Grant Millington.

Subs: 13. Nathan Massey, 18. Frankie Mariano, 20. Jamie Ellis, 32. Lee Jewitt.

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