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Nathan Brown to break new ground facing up to his former club
NATHAN Brown treads new ground on Friday night when he faces a former club for the first time in his career as a player or coach.
Saints tackle Huddersfield Giants in the first of their warm-up games ahead of the February 2 Super League opener between the two sides (8pm).
And the former St George and Huddersfield boss says he is excited ahead of the campaign after plenty of hard work in the off-season.
Brown said: “We have been working and not playing and now is the time to play and see how things are going.
“It is the first time I have opposed a former club – I played for St George for ten years and then retired as a player and coached them for six and then when I left there I went to a different country.
“It will be a bit different even though it is only a friendly. I want us to do well and Huddersfield to do just a little worse than us.
“Everyone will play some part. Baloo (Paul Anderson) last week and he will be playing a lot of players too.
“We are both going to be using the game to give younger guys opportunities and put into practice what we have been working on this past eight weeks.
“Some of the young guys have trained really well and it will be good to see how they go against Super League opposition.
“Then play Wakefield the next week – they finished the year well. At training is one thing – and that gives them the opportunity – but we need to see that adapt to pitch.
“There are definitely a number of players putting a marker down to give themselves a chance of forcing their way into the squad.”
He said all three new recruits will play some part of Friday’s game and picked out the attributes the trio will bring to saints this term.
“Willie Manu is a lot different to the Willie I coached all those years back (at St George). His experience and family life has seen him make some adjustments in his life and he has become one of the has become one of the dominant Super League players.
“He brings a lot of threat when he has the ball in hand and opposition coaches are aware of that. Every time we played Hull we knew we had to stop him, and that is probably the same for every team. He is a threatening player who we feel can help the team.
“The players are excited by Alex Walmsley and want to watch him go. Pre-season he has been good and now we want to see him out on the field and what he does at Super League level when the pace of the game steps up.
“We will see how he goes on Friday night – he has had a good pre-season and has given himself a good chance.
“Jordan Turner is a talented young kid whose best position is centre.
“Unfortunately he can play anywhere, which is a great attribute but can be a detriment to a player’s career.”