Seven tries including two each for Mark Percival and Regan Grace saw Saints win their first game of 2020 in style, with a 36-6 win over London Broncos in Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook's Testimonial match.
The first five minutes saw a controlled and well disciplined display by both sides, neither team keen to make any early errors. However, Saints opened the scoring in the fifth minute as some fast play down the right saw Lachlan Coote find Jack Welsby, playing on the wing, who went over. Coote added the conversion from a tight angle to make it 6-0.
Saints scored again in the 12th minute as Mark Percival went over after some fast passing from right to left through Jonny Lomax and Theo Fages, who eventually fed the ball to Percival. Coote was unable to add the conversion.
Saints continued to press, with Alex Walmsley‘s go forward a threat to the Broncos, however we were unable to add to our lead until the 21st minute when Coote’s dinked kick on the left was collected by Lomax just to the left of the posts to make it 14-0. Coote was unable to convert.
London got themselves on the score sheet through Sadiq Adebiyi in the 25th minute after he drove his way past Coote on the right before scoring in the corner. Kieran Dixon added the conversion to make the score 14-6. The visitors were nearly in again a few minutes later, but good Saints defence kept them at bay.
Percival got his second of the game in the 32nd minute after a move he started, which saw Fages brought down 10m short of the line after a break down the middle. Fages then found Percival on the left and the centre went over for his second. Coote added the conversion to make it 20-6.
Saints found time for a fifth try just before half time through Regan Grace, after a good passing move from right to left through Coote who passed on to Percival, who subsequently found Grace on the far left and he crossed to make it 24-6. Coote missed the conversion.
After a slow start to the second half, Grace brought the game back to life with a typical thrilling try and a trademark step. He broke free of the London defence before running virtually the length of the pitch and scoring under the posts. Lewis Dodd, on for his Saints debut, added the conversion to make it 30-6.
Joe Batchelor added Saints’ seventh of the afternoon in the 69th minute – his first senior try for the club, after Fages fed the ball to him from the right and Batchelor went over on the left side of the sticks. Dodd added the conversion to make it 36-6.
Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook fittingly took home the sponsors man of the match award as the game ended 36-6 in Kristian Woolf’s first game in charge.
Saints 13: Lachlan Coote, Jack Welsby, Kevin Naiqama, Mark Percival, Regan Grace, Jonny Lomax, Theo Fages, Alex Walmsley, James Bentley, Luke Thompson, Zeb Taia, Dom Peyroux, Louie MaCarthy-Scarsbrook.
Interchanges: Matty Lees, Jack Ashworth, Joseph Paulo, Aaron Smith, Joe Batchelor, Lewis Dodd, Matthew Costello, Josh Simm, Tom Nisbet, Nico Rizelli, Callum Hazzard, Josh Eaves.
Tries: Percival (2), Grace (2), Welsby, Lomax, Batchelor.
Goals: Coote (2) Dodd (2).
London 13: Oliver Ashall-Bott, Tuoyo Egodo, Joshua Walters, William Lovell, Kieran Dixon, Cory Aston, James Meadows, Robert Butler, Matthew Fozard, Olsi Krasniqi, Sadiq Adebiyi, Rhys Curran, Edward Battye.
Interchanges: Daniel Norman, Gregory Richards, Daniel Hindmarsh-Takyi, Sam Davis, Jacob Ogden, Joshua Hodson, Guy Armitage.