SAINTS boss Keiron Cunningham felt his side's 28-24 win over Catalans Dragons was a deserved reward for their effort in Perpignan.

Saints looked to be heading for a fourth successive defeat before Jack Owens crossed for a late match-winning try, adding to earlier scores from Adam Swift, Mark Percival, Ryan Morgan and Adam Walker.

Cunningham said: "The effort was outstanding. I thought we were the better team, and if we had not have won the game I think that would have been undeserved.

"We had plenty of opportunities, we took some and wasted a few and I'm glad we saw the game through in the end. It was a true gritty performance from us."

"We knew it was going to be tough, it has not been a happy hunting ground for us over here in France over the past few years.

"We had a lot stacked up against us with a couple of losses in recent weeks and I'm proud of what the players did and I really think they deserved the win."

The visitors led 22-18 at half-time but it was less of an open game after the interval.

Cunningham was pleased with how the game tightened up in the second half.

"It was a really fast-flowing game in the first half and really open, I thought defensively in the second half both teams tightened up. Half-time certainly helped both teams," Cunningham said.

A moment of magic from Theo Fages set up the clinching try, and Cunningham said of the 22-year-old former Salford player: "Theo has been brilliant since he came to the club.

"You forget how young he is, he still has lots of learning to do but he's already a top player for us. Not only does he set up the match-winning try for us, but he scrambles at the end to make a defensive play and saves a try."

Catalans coach Laurent Frayssinous saw his team's winless run extend to three games.

"It's disappointing to see us lose a game like we did. I think we got a few tough calls at key moments which is disappointing," Frayssinous said.

"We wanted to fix our defence in the second half and we managed to fix it, but we need to be better in the first half. We allowed them too many opportunities in the first half and that's not good enough. We need to be better defensively for 80 minutes."

Frayssinous was pleased with his half-back partnership between Luke Walsh and Richie Myler.

He added: "I thought our combinations were pretty good in attack today. We scored some tries on the back of their combos in the middle and we created more opportunities to score tries and that is pleasing for us."