THE Grand Opening of Langtree Park is featured on the latest edition of the Saintsrlfc.com Podcast.Downloadable here and from iTunes, we have interviews with Paul Wellens about his injury and Royce Simmons on the task of creating a fortress.Andy Dixon talks about the win over London too.
THE England Academy continued their Australian tour with victory in their second warm-up game against Parramatta Juniors at Cabramatta Stadium earlier today.After a tense opening which saw both sides embroiled in a dogged battle for supremacy, it was England who opening the scoring on the 14 minute mark, when Ryan Hampshire ran in under the posts.The half-back was on hand to finish a move he started and profit from a simple inside ball from full-back Tierney who had gathered a sublime chip through to split the defence.Parramatta responded quickly however and just five minutes later they were level through winger Ben Fritz who managed to sneak over in the corner.Both sides resumed a hard-fought battle and it took until the 33rd minute for another point to be registered, when England winger James Duckworth powered his way through three defenders to cross the line in the right hand corner.Hampshire kept his composure to slot a difficult conversion and give England a 12-6 half-time lead.England came out of the blocks firing in the second half and a whirlwind start saw them open up a 36-6 lead just shy of the 60 minute mark.Ben Currie registered the first score of the half when he beat the defence all ends up with a show-and-go before accelerating through the line and Ryan Hampshire then scored an equally impressive try, profiting from a powerful run from John Bateman who split the defence to set up an easy score.Jon Ford found himself adding a third try of the half and from the resulting re-start, Joe Burgess ran the length of the field after Bateman sucked in the defence top open the field for the Wigan flyer.A lapse in defensive concentration saw Parramatta add two quick tries through first Christian Kagiassis and then full-back John Formal to bring the score back to 36-18.England has the last say in the game though when Hampshire scored his third try of the game when Bateman again burst through a hole to put the half-back through for the easiest finish before adding the extras to seal at 42-18 victory.“I thought there were a lot of improvements from the game versus New South Wales and the guys showed some great touches tonight,” said England Academy coach Dave Elliott.“We scored 42 points and I think we could have added a lot more so I’m very happy with the performance.“It was pleasing to see that the things we worked on during the week were executed during the game, but as a coach I think there are always areas for improvement and we still have some things to work on before our next game.“I’ve got a huge selection headache now going into the first test. A lot of players have really held their hands up for a place. There were some outstanding performances tonight and the whole squad has really performed.”England Academy team v Parramatta (professional and community clubs):1, Lewis Tierney (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Pats) 2, James Duckworth (Leeds Rhinos, Whinmoor Warriros)3, Mark Percival (St Helens, Halton Hornets) 4, John Ford (Salford City Reds, Blackbrook Royals) 5, Joe Burgess (Wigan Warriors, Ince Rose Bridge) 6, George Williams (Wigan Warriors, Ince Rose Bridge) 7, Ryan Hampshire (Wigan Warriors, Normanton Knights) 8, Ryan Sutton (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Pats) 9, James Cunningham (Hull FC, East Hull) 10, Gavin Bennion (Warrington Wolves, Ryland Sharks) 11, Luke Thompson (St Helens, Pilkington Recs) 12, Connor Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Pats) 13, Ben Currie C (Warrington Wolves, Parkside Golbourn) 14, Liam Sutcliffe (Leeds Rhinos, Hunslet Warriors) 15, John Bateman (Bradford Bulls, Dudley Hill) 16, Jordan Baldwinson (Leeds Rhinos, Hunslet Warriors) 17, Josh Johnson (Huddersfield Giants, Saddleworth)Tries: Hampshire 3, Duckworth, Currie, Ford, BurgessGoals: Hampshire 7Man of the Match: Gavin BennionParramatta Juniors squad1, John Formal2, Ben Fritz3, Levi Spoi4, Eric Aukofolau5, Sulaisi Suli6, Ryan Matterson7, Christian Kagiassis8, Jordan Grant9, Dom Reardon10, Will Bugden11, FJ Moala12, Takai Moeakiola13, Jordan Hall14, Jason Vidal15, Jim Au Cheung16, Paea Pua17, Tepai TepuTries: Fritz, Kagiassis, FormalGoals: Kagiassis 3 read more
WHAT a night!Saints progressed to the Grand Final with a superb 30-12 victory over Catalan on Thursday.Our official snapper Bernard Platt (@plattyphoto) was on hand to capture some of the great sights of the evening.
Three defeats have left Saints in last chance saloon but the club’s head coach is confident they can do well at Trinity.“We haven’t got time to dwell on the loss to Wigan, we are definitely disappointed, there’s no shying away from that, but we have to focus on a must win game on Thursday against Wakefield.“I said to the playing group on Saturday in our review, it is perform now or we are gone. There’s no extra week where we can talk about missed opportunities or improving, we have to get it right on Thursday. I’m excited about that, as it is a do or die game, and that is the beauty of the Super 8s.“I am contemplating changes as I know I have to get it right this week. It is a crunch game, Theo (Fages) will come into my thoughts, Danny Richardson has been going well as has Matty Lees too.“Ryan Morgan should be ok. He has to do a number of tests to be cleared but he came into training this week feeling ok.”A win over Wakefield would leave Saints a point behind Thursday’s opponents – and the last time the two sides met Holbrook’s men won 41-16.Trinity have risen into the top four since then – and head into this week’s game on the back of a 43-18 victory over Salford.“Wakefield are going well,” Holbrook continued. “Chris Chester and John Kear are doing a good job with that side. Jacob Millar and Tyler Randell are good players and Tyler seems to have fitted in nicely.“I am confident in our side and looking forward to seeing how we respond on Thursday.“We have to get better in all areas. Defensively we were poor against Wigan, we gave them too much time to play.“I thought we were ok in attack. We had last pass issues twice in the first half and that could have changed things at half time.“Benny (Barba) went well too. To play 80 minutes first game back and being 12-0 down after five minutes is tough on anyone – especially when they are being asked to create things.“He did well in his first game and will be better for the run.”Saints travel to Wakefield (8pm) on Thursday. Tickets are on sale from the Ticket Office, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here. read more
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