Saints defeated by Catalans in Perpignan

Saints were beaten 24-12 by Catalans Dragons on Friday evening in Perpignan...

James Roby equalled the club appearance record against the Catalans Dragons in Perpignan on Friday evening, as he moved level with club legend Kel Coslett by making his 531st career game in the Red V!

An error from the kick off from Saints, as they allowed the ball to bounce and Alex Walmsley was met by a strong Dragons chase, who pushed the returning prop into touch. The visitors were able to keep the hosts out though, as a move down their right edge on the last was dealt with by Will Hopoate with a bit of help from other blue shirts. The Dragons had another opportunity in Saints territory their following set. Saints got caught offside which allowed Mitchell Pearce to kick for touch, some good last ditch defending from the Red V once again kept the hosts out though, as a high kick was fumbled by the Dragons which gave Saints the ball back.

Despite being camped on their own line for the majority of the opening ten minutes, it was the visitors who took the lead 12 minutes in. Walmsley made a break downfield which put Saints on the front foot. Off the back of it, Saints earned a six again and a few tackles later, under the sticks, record equaller Roby found Walmsley who crashed over from close range. Tommy Makinson converted from in front of the sticks, 0-6.

The host had a great chance to level midway through the first period, Tom Davies received the ball with lots of space ahead of him, however a great tackle by Makinson dragged the former Wigan man into touch, as Saints continued to hold firm against the relentless Catalans pressure, 0-6.

Saints’ second attack of the game led to their second try. Konrad Hurrell ran across the Catalans line and broke a tackle before finding the supporting Jack Welsby with a good offload, he stepped past Arthur Mourgue to score underneath the sticks. Makinson converted from in front of the sticks again, 0-12 Saints led.

Another chance soon followed. A couple of ‘six again’ calls camped the Saints on Catalans’ line. Towards the end of a set, Welsby tried to find Tee Ritson on the wing but the pass went into touch as the hosts survived. From the restart, the Dragons grabbed their first try. Sam Tomkins found Mourgue on his inside 4o metres from the Saints line, he stepped past Welsby before racing over to reduce the deficit. Adam Keighran converted, 6-12 Saints led.

Five minutes before the break, Saints were reduced to twelve men for ten minutes as Hurrell was sin binned for dissent. The hosts took advantage immediately. Pearce found the debutant Matt Ikuvalu close to the Saints line and he broke a tackle before scrambling over. Keighran added the two, 12-12 it was tied as we headed towards the break.

Suia Taukeiaho was sent to the sin bin in the final minute of the half for a shoulder charge to Welsby. The two sides went in level at the break though in Perpignan, two converted tries a-piece meaning it was 12-12 at the break.

Two minutes into the second half, Catalans had a penalty to the left of the sticks for an escort, and opted to go for two points. Keighran added the two, the hosts led for the first time on the night, 14-12.

Catalans went close again six minutes later. Tom Johnstone received the ball on the Catalans wing but a great last ditch tackle from Ritson pushed the Englishman into touch metres short of the try-line.

The lead was extended in the 50th minute. A flowing move from left to right ended with Ikuvalu finding Davies who flew over in the corner. The try was awarded after a video referee review. Keighran converted from the right touchline, 20-12 the hosts led.

Davies had his second try on the hour mark. An early kick from Tomkins was collected by the winger in acres of space, who planted the ball down. Despite going upstairs, the camera angles weren’t able to show whether the winger was on or offside, so the video referee went with the on-field call of try. Keighran missed the kick, 24-12.

Saints’ best chance to get back into the game came courtesy of a Ritson break down the right wing, but the ball just wouldn’t bounce right for the chasing Welsby, as the hosts recovered the ball.

That was to be the final chance for the Red V, as Saints lost 24-12 to Catalans Dragons on Friday evening in Perpignan in front of over 1000 travelling Saints fans.

Match Summary

Catalans Dragons Team: Arthur Mourgue, Tom Davies, Adam Keighran, Matt Ikuvalu, Tom Johnstone, Mitchell Pearce, Sam Tomkins, Jordan Dezaria, Benjamin Garcia, Julian Bousquet, Paul Seguier, Matt Whitley, Mike McMeekan.

Interchanges: Romain Navarrete, Tiaki Chan, Siua Taukeiaho, Manu Ma’u.

18th Man: Arthur Romano.

Tries: Arthur Mourgue (29), Matt Ikuvalu (37), Tom Davies (50, 60)

Conversions: Adam Keighran (3 from 4)

Penalties: Adam Keighran (1 from 1)

Sin Bin: Suia Taukeiaho (39)

Saints Team: Jack Welsby, Tee Ritson, Konrad Hurrell, Will Hopoate, Tommy Makinson, Jonny Lomax, Lewis Dodd, Alex Walmsley, James Roby, Matty Lees, Sam Royle, Joe Batchelor, James Bell.

Interchanges: Joey Lussick, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Jake Wingfield, George Delaney.

18th Man: Jon Bennison.

Tries: Alex Walmsley (12), Jack Welsby (22)

Conversions: Tommy Makinson (2 from 2)

Sin Bin: Konrad Hurrell (35)

HT: 12-12

FT: 24-12


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