Saints boss vows not to surrender lead at top of table

St Helens Star: Smiles on the faces of Jon Wilkin and Lance Hohaia after a training ground move sees Paul Wellens step through for a try.	Picture: Bernard Platt Smiles on the faces of Jon Wilkin and Lance Hohaia after a training ground move sees Paul Wellens step through for a try. Picture: Bernard Platt

SAINTS must match Wigan physically if they are to hold on to their lead at the top of the Super League.

Nathan Brown’s boys regained their place at the summit at the weekend, but the Saints boss urged his team not to surrender it meekly like on the two previous occasions.

The Saints pack will be emboldened by the return of Alex Walmsley after missing last week’s game against Castleford through suspension, with Warriors missing their fiery hooker Michael McIlorum with a broken arm and second rower Liam Farrell through suspension.

If any further crackle needing adding to a normal Saints v Wigan clash, the winner will be top of the league come 10pm Friday.

Defeat on Good Friday saw Saints’ early season promise deflated – a win on Friday is their first chance of atonement.

Brown said: “When you play the good teams you want to put in a good performance.

“We have beaten Leeds, Huddersfield and Warrington this year but lost to Wigan and lot of people were very down by that, but Wigan are a very good team.

“We are both high on the ladder and it is a game we would obviously like to win.

“We are on top now and have had a few goes on top this year land feel that the last time we were there we did not give it our best shot at staying there.

If you get beat and lose top spot but have a real crack at it, that is one thing.

“But the last two times we have been there we have surrendered top spot a bit easier than what we would have liked.

The game this week will be tough, no two ways about it.

Physically the intensity of the game is going to be high.

I would like to think we can do a littkle bit better in that area than we did last time against them.

It is a game that has a lot of meaning and both clubs have a respect for each other, but among the fans there is a dislike and rivalry.

“The crowds sing and get right into it and that intensity helps build the intensity on the field.

“The derbies over here are huge and the fact that the sides are firts and third puts even more intent into an already high intensity game.

We have a lot of local players involved as do Wigan and there will be a fair bit of feeling.

I just hope that when the game finishes we can say that our physical part of the game and our commitment been as good, if not better, than theirs.

Last time around they were better than us in that area.

and feel that the last time we were there we did not give it our best shot at staying there.

“On the last two times we have been there we have surrendered top spot a bit easier than what we would have liked.

“The game this week will be tough, no two ways about it.

“Physically the intensity of the game is going to be high.

“I would like to think we can do a little bit better in that area than we did last time against them.”

Despite criticism that Brown had not bought into the derby as much as his passionate Wigan counterpart Shaun Wane, the Saints boss declared that he fully knows what it means to the players and the fans of both towns.

“It is a game that has a lot of meaning and both clubs have a respect for each other, but among the fans there is a dislike and rivalry.

“The crowds sing and get right into it and that intensity helps build the intensity on the field.

“The derbies over here are huge and the fact that the sides are first and third puts even more intent into an already high intensity game.

“We have a lot of local players involved as do Wigan and there will be a fair bit of feeling.

“I just hope that when the game finishes we can say that our physical part of the game and our commitment been as good, if not better, than theirs,” Brown said.

Comments (3)

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1:49pm Thu 26 Jun 14

mulholland.t says...

A few things need sorting out this time Application, Attitude & Commitment for the full 80 minutes, We where right in the game at Langtree Park at half time & then we came out with no passion second half & lost the game as A result, If we really want to consider ourselves as Grand Finalists & Winners at Old Trafford this year, Then we have to go to places like Wigan, Leeds, Warrington, Castleford & the rest & win, It's all well & good winning those games at home but i'ts only through winning the big games away from home is where the belief really hits home & comes from. COYS!!!!
A few things need sorting out this time Application, Attitude & Commitment for the full 80 minutes, We where right in the game at Langtree Park at half time & then we came out with no passion second half & lost the game as A result, If we really want to consider ourselves as Grand Finalists & Winners at Old Trafford this year, Then we have to go to places like Wigan, Leeds, Warrington, Castleford & the rest & win, It's all well & good winning those games at home but i'ts only through winning the big games away from home is where the belief really hits home & comes from. COYS!!!! mulholland.t
  • Score: 2

6:10pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Bill Bradbury says...

As I have written many times there are only two games worth winning in a season Wigan (h) Wigan(a). Wembley, Grand Final?? Minor games unless its against Wigan. Should win tonight but again --it's Wigan!
As I have written many times there are only two games worth winning in a season Wigan (h) Wigan(a). Wembley, Grand Final?? Minor games unless its against Wigan. Should win tonight but again --it's Wigan! Bill Bradbury
  • Score: 0

6:22pm Fri 27 Jun 14

keepitreel says...

do we believe anything BROWN says,he has been in charge all season and apart from a few brief spells saints have been whoefull,good job Wigan are going through a bad spell or tonight's game could be embarrassing for saints.
do we believe anything BROWN says,he has been in charge all season and apart from a few brief spells saints have been whoefull,good job Wigan are going through a bad spell or tonight's game could be embarrassing for saints. keepitreel
  • Score: -4

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