Owens: Great Opportunity

JACK Owens and Mark Percival maybe peas in a pod off the field – but that’s where the familiarity will end for the new signing come the start of the season.

The 21-year-old penned a two-year contract at the Saints and cannot wait to get started.

Yet, it will be all change for the outside back – even though he is best friends with Mr Percival – as he explains.

“I started at Widnes when I was 12 and have been there ever since,” he said. “I played through the Academy and into the first team but it came to a point where my game time was limited.

“I spoke to Denis (Betts) and asked if I was able to go out and play somewhere else for the 2016 season.

“This opportunity came up and I felt it was the best one for me.

“It will be a bit alien for me as I have always had the same coach and group of players around me but I am excited to meet my new teammates and the characters in the squad.

“I know Percy (Mark Percival) really well and we’ve just been on holiday together. I grew up with him.”

Jack played the majority of his academy career at full back – but scored the majority of his professional points on the wing.

He was top points scorer for the Vikings in 2013 and 2015.

“I do prefer to play full back but at Widnes I was behind Rhys Hanbury – who has been great – and therefore filled in on the wing,” he continued. “Brett Hodgson really helped me a lot with my goalkicking and that’s where my points have come from.

“I’m happy to play wherever though especially at a club like St Helens. There’s a lot of talent here with Jonny Lomax, Shannon McDonnell and Percy too. He has done a great job at fullback when needed.

“I know I have to earn the right to play first. I have to prove to the players and coaching staff that I deserve to play and if I do get the chance, then try and hold on to that spot.

“My focus is to get fit, strong and develop my skills.

“I loved playing at Widnes, the coach and the players were great to be around. I wish them nothing but the best of luck. They are a top eight club for sure.

“But it’s time to be selfish, time to get away from my home club and fight for my position here.”

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