SAINTS head coach Justin Holbrook has apologised for his team's Challenge Cup semi-final failure.

Speaking at the club's press conference 24 hours after the shock 35-16 loss to Catalans Dragons at the University of Bolton Stadium, he said: “It still hurts and it’s still disappointing how we played.

“We were just miles apart. We just made too many errors and Catalans really took advantage of that and we were just too far behind.

READ: Holbrook's post-match verdict

“We tried to fight back in the second half which was pleasing but it was too big a task and we weren’t good enough.

“The lads are doing it tough as they should. I want them to feel that way. I don’t want them to brush it aside.

“If it had been a Super 8s game we’d have been able to pick ourselves up quick, but unfortunately it wasn’t. It was a Challenge Cup semi final and we’re knocked out.

“They’re all disappointed, as all the staff are. It’s what we’ve got to accept.

“I feel sorry for the fans, I feel disappointed for everyone that works at our club from the CEO and our chairman to the office staff and everyone involved in our club, and all our fans.

“We knew how much it meant to them to get to Wembley, having not been there for 10 years. I understand that as do the players, and we couldn’t get there.

“Even at half time, as bad as we were, we were still confident we could win because we’ve got confidence in our team. But as the time drifted away in the last 10 minutes we knew we couldn’t get there.

“Prior to then we were still backing ourselves. We knew we’d put ourselves into a hole but were confident we’d get out.


Saints head coach, sat far right on the bench, with his head down at the University of Bolton Stadium. Picture by Bernard Platt

“The fans were still cheering us on which was great and for that many to get there and make the effort only for us to play so badly it’s tough and, I understand, disappointing.

“I’m sorry.”