KC: Focus On Reds

KEIRON Cunningham says all eyes are on this Thursday’s First Utility Super League Round 2 clash at Salford even though the World Club Challenge is just around the corner.

Saints travel to the Red Devils ten days ahead of what is billed as the biggest game in Langtree Park’s history.

But Cunningham says the focus is now.

“The turnaround between the two games is good,” he said. “We can assess things and see who is available. But our sights are on doing a job at Salford. As soon as that game is reviewed we’ll then focus on next week and see who is available.”

Saints look set to have Luke Thompson back for the match at the AJ Bel Stadium with Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook rated as 50:50.

Luke Walsh however has come down with a virus limiting his chances of training with the first team – and that means he is unlikely to play in the World Club Challenge too.

Cunningham continued: “We’re waiting for Louie to get the all clear but there is no chance for Luke. I would have liked to have run him this week but he hasn’t trained with the team because of a virus. We’re not in a bad spot though.

“I would be hard to bring him back for a game like that (WCC) so if he doesn’t play this week then it is unlikely I would bring him back next week fit or not.

“His leg is 100 per cent fine, every specialist in the land would tell you that, and he has had surgery on his ankle. That would have happened anyway but we couldn’t get it done because of his leg. But the virus has knocked his return back.

“Luke Thompson got a side strain against Wigan and is looking likely for this week. He was outstanding in the trials and was the pick in the Grand Final for me.”

Salford may have lost their opener at Warrington 22-8, but showed enough in the first half to suggest that scoreline wasn’t totally reflective of the performance.

“I thought it was a good game and Salford looked good,” Keiron continued. “Hock and Patterson were in the middle and that added something to their game.

“You could see from all the games though that everyone was nervous and scratchy.”

Tickets for Thursday’s game remain on sale from the Ticket Office at Langtree Park, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.

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