ZEB Taia will probably want to forget Friday’s defeat at Hull after blotting his early copy book with a succession of dropped balls.
But the 32-year-old, who joined the club from Gold Coast Titans on a three-year deal when Joe Greenwood went in the opposite direction, confidently expects to get in the swing of things soon.
Getting used to the conditions again after leaving the sunny Gold Coast and basics like learning the calls and even all of his new teammates’ names will soon come to him.
And he is looking forward to making an impression at the club former Saints forwards Anthony Laffranchi and Sia Soliola recommended.
Taia, who arrived just before the Wakefield match, has now been joined by his wife and two daughters.
Now he just needs to focus on his game.
He said: “I got my Visa pretty quickly and was here ready for the game against Wakefield.
“It was good to get some miles under the legs as it was my first game of the season, having not played any trial games at Gold Coast.
“Getting the 80 in at Hull was better.
“I’m just building week by week now and will get into the swing of things over the next couple of weeks.
“The first week I came it was torrential rain and the ground was really muddy - so getting used to that was the main thing.
“I was sitting on the bench for the whole first half and that was part of the plan, but as I was running up the sidelines I kept thinking ‘welcome back to Super League’. It was probably the worst conditions I have played in.
“I am happy but when you do a really good pre-season in Australia and get ready to play NRL then come over here, it is a bit of a hiccup in your preparation. But I am happy here now.”
The former Catalans second rower is a rarity in a player that has left the NRL, twice, to head to Europe - but he is adamant that he has good years left to give Saints.
“ I did three years Super League and wanted to challenge myself to go back to NRL and did that and played every game.
“It was never part of the plan to come back to Super League but when that opportunity opens up you have to take it. I know I have got some good years ahead of me,” he said.
He has come at a tough time, with the club in the middle of losing streak, but Taia is confident that it will turn around if they correct aspects of their game.
“We are building and the boys worked hard against Hull defensively but we lacked skill and execution with the ball and were defending back to back sets in the first half as a result.
“If we can execute better in attack then we will win those games. We can’t keep turning over easy ball like that because it wastes energy in defence,” he said.
Taia returns to his old Perpignan stamping ground on Saturday to take on the Catalans club he spent three years with before returning to the NRL at the end of 2015.
It is a game he is relishing.
“I left Catalans on good terms and have some good memories from my three years there,” he added.
“It will be weird playing against my old teammates but I will treat it as any other game.
“I am looking forward to the challenge, but flying there and back in one day is new to me.”