KEIRON Cunningham was disappointed with Saints performance in their 22-6 friendly loss to Castleford – but insisted they will be better come the beginning of the season.
“This is what trial games are for,” he said. “This was our second game of pre-season and Cas looked a couple of games ahead of us. It is tough when you have to adjust after losing a half back – and someone you have consistently trained with for about eight or nine weeks – but we have to readjust, find out what works and that is what this experience is all about.
“As you can see we had a look at a few combinations but even without a recognised half back unforced errors put you in a bad spot. Cas are a good side, look well drilled, and took advantage.
“Their completion rate was at 90 per cent and ours was at 30 at times during the game. Stuff like that hurts you. You have to be smarter, learn and we will be a different side in a couple of weeks time.
“The biggest thing is we got time under our belts and had the chance to look at the half combinations we will be using for the next few weeks.”
He continued: “There was some good things. I thought Luke Thompson did well and Tommy Makinson was outstanding. He looked like the player he was when he was holding his hand up for England. Mark Percival and Adam Swift did some good stuff too.”
“Our resilience was also good considering how much possession they had. We let in a couple of soft tries from kicks and one on one misses, but we held up to a lot of what they threw at us and our structures looked firm and solid.
“We will find a half combination for the club that looks most comfortable and get some consistency there. We need a back bone of a side that takes us forward. We won’t have Matty (Smith) for a few weeks so we have to move on now.
“One thing for sure we are united and working together.”