James Roby: My Pride

HE may be a veteran of these occasions but James Roby will be as proud as anyone when he walks out on to the Old Trafford surface this Saturday.

Six times the influential hooker has played in a Grand Final and each time he has walked a dream all local players crave.

“Both teams are well known for bringing through young lads,” he said. “I was lucky enough to get a chance at my hometown club. There are other players now getting their chance too; local lads from a working class area playing on the world stage for their town. It doesn’t get much better than that.”

Roby has been at the pinnacle of everything Saints have done well this season and was rightly nominated for the Steve Prescott Man of Steel.

But he now wants to finish the job.

“It’s fantastic to be here, first and foremost, and it is a massive occasion,” he continued. “It is a great reward for the players. Winning the League Leaders’ Shield was a real confidence booster and now we are 80 minutes away from being Champions.

“We’ve had a year filled with adversity but it’s been made sweeter by the fact we have recovered as a team and covered each other’s backs. The team spirit here is fantastic.

“We finished top and then have gone on to eliminate the other teams. Now we have to take it one step further.

“We all know our record at Old Trafford but now we are back and have done the hard work to be here. I have confidence in the ability of the team and if we play as we can then there is no reason why this year can’t be ours.

“We don’t need any extra motivation; it is derby, there’s added spice and it brings out the best in the players. There will be a great atmosphere with thousands of fans from both clubs. Hopefully, I will remember this one for the right reasons.”

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