Saints Of To Winning Start

SAINTS got their Super League season off to the flying start with a 30-16 win over Huddersfield Giants.

Luke Walsh drove the show with a hand in all five tries – Mark Percival profiting twice from the scrum half deft play.

He was backed by Jordan Turner, the strong running Atelea Vea and the go forward of Kyle Amor in appalling conditions.

Keiron Cunningham’s charges mastering the rainy weather ahead of their opponents.

After a tame opening Saints won back to back penalties and profited through a lovely piece of play from Jon Wilkin.

A link move from Walsh and Turner won the home side the momentum and then the captain slotted an inch perfect kick through for Percival to touch down.

Huddersfield threatened to hit back on 10 minutes – but Wilkin intercepted – and then had another two sets on Saints’ line.

Adam Swift was then unlucky not to catch a stray pass and from the scrum Aaron Murphy levelled up matters.

The Giants threatened more points as the half progressed – Saints defending like their lives depended on it.

Wilkin threatened with another chip over the top but once Makinson failed to deal with a lengthy kick from Brough, Cunningham’s men were under pressure once more.

And desperate to put points on the board Huddersfield dropped the ball.

Saints made them regret that decision. A high tackle in midfield saw them gain possession and following strong runs from Dominique Peyroux, Amor and Turner, Walsh slipped a wonderful kick through to Vea.

The second rower’s pick up matching the wonderful skill of his scrum half.

Walsh was having an excellent game and another chip over to the corner – and the pressure from Makinson – saw the Giants spill the ball.

Saints returned the favour though and moments later the visitors were back down Saints’ end looking for points.

Ball handling was proving to be an issue but not for Walsh.

He drove Saints into excellent field position once again and following a strong run from Savelio, Percival crossed over thanks to Jack Owens’ pass.

Saints defended back to back penalties on their own line and went in 16-4 to the good.

The second half began like the first – strong kicks, driving down the middle and playing for field position.

Walsh almost unlocked the door on 46 minutes with another superb kick – Saints gaining a drop out.

And from there they scored – Jordan Turner crossing on an angle and showing his strength.

Walsh then kicked the extras and Saints looked home and dry.

But a three penalties in a short spell handed the impetus back to the Giants; a slide rule kick  giving Ukuma Ta’ai a simple put down.

Saints weathered the storm and then restored their advantage.

A simple Walsh kick was knocked back by Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and scooped up by Luke Thompson.

With 10 minutes to go the Giants received a huge slice of luck and it opened up the game as a result.

They were adjudged to have kicked a 40:20 when it was clear the ball left the boot well after the ’40’ and then Jake Connor put down a kick right under the sticks.

The West Stand suggesting he didn’t ground it.

But Walsh kicked a penalty with three minutes to go to settle the nerves and claim the points.

Match Summary:


Tries: Percival (2), Vea, Turner, Thompson

Goals: Walsh (5 from 6)


Tries: Murphy, Ta’ai, Connor

Goals: Brough (2 from 3)


Saints: 8

Giants: 9

HT: 16-4

FT: 30-16

REF: R Hicks

ATT: 10,408



22. Jack Owens; 2. Tommy Makinson, 18. Dominique Peyroux, 4. Mark Percival, 5. Adam Swift; 3. Jordan Turner, 7. Luke Walsh; 10. Kyle Amor, 9. James Roby, 14. Lama Tasi, 12. Jon Wilkin, 11. Atelea Vea, 13. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook.

Subs: 8. Alex Walmsley, 15. Greg Richards, 16. Andre Savelio, 17. Luke Thompson.


1. Scott Grix; 2. Jermaine McGillvary, 3. Leroy Cudjoe, 18. Jake Connor, 5. Aaron Murphy; 6. Danny Brough, 7. Jamie Ellis; 16. Sam Rapira, 9. Ryan Hinchcliffe, 8. Eorl Crabtree, 17. Ukuma Ta’ai, 12. Michael Lawrence, 13. Larne Patrick.

Subs: 14. Daniel Smith, 19. Josh Johnson, 20. Kruise Leeming, 22. Oliver Roberts. 

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