Match Reaction…

Justin Holbrook was happy that Saints, baring a mathematical miracle, are set to line up in the Betfred Super League semi-finals next week.

They all but secured their spot with a 30-4 win over Salford at the AJ Bell Stadium on Thursday night.

“It was a tough game wasn’t it?” he said. “It was spiteful at times and emotional too but it was important we settled down in that second half and finished it off well so I am pleased.

“I have only seen the replays of the incidents like you have so don’t want to say too much at the present time.

“When I came in, everyone asked if we could make the eight and then the four. We were in the four and then out of the four and people asked if we could make it again.

“I always had belief and now we are there. I am really proud of them, they have worked hard and we can now look forward to next week’s game.

“Cas and Leeds play two differing styles but whoever we face we will have to prepare well. But in saying that I am happy we are there and confident in our team.”

He continued: “I thought Alex Walmsley was outstanding. He turned the game with his carries and he has been defending well. I thought his impact made a huge difference in the game.

“Ben Barba was probably the best player on the field. We could have brought him off the bench against Wigan to play 40… and the next week at 60… but we were proved right. We had to ride the water a bit those early days but we know he is ready to play 80 minutes in a semi-final now.”

Holbrook said that Jonny Lomax picked up a slight leg strain at the end of last week’s game and he should return to the line-up in the semi-final.

Saints are likely to learn their opponents after the result of Friday’s Castleford v Hull match.

However, should Hull win then a 91-point victory for Wigan over Wakefield would see them bow out of the competition.

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