HAPPY New Year!

2015 has a pretty hard act to follow after the last 12-months left us with such cherished memories – most notably that of Paul Wellens lifting the big trophy aloft after Saints’ Grand Final triumph over Wigan at Old Trafford.

Those memories have given all of us in town a warm afterglow during the off-season, but with the season one month away all that is now consigned to the history books.

In this town we have so much to look forward to in the sports scene this year – and a four-day spell in February sums up what a sporting metropolis St Helens genuinely is when some of its sportsmen will be at the centre of global attention.

The sporting bonanza kicks off on Thursday, February 19 when two of the town’s arrows aces – Dave Chisnall and Stephen Bunting – will put their toes on the oche in front of a packed out Liverpool Echo Arena in round three of the Premier League of Darts.

Two days later the eyes of the sporting world will switch to Monaco where Fingerpost’s finest Martin Murray attempts to wrest the middleweight crown from the undefeated big-hitter Gennady Golovkin.

Everyone knows it is a tough fight – Golovkin has wiped the floor with all-comers knocking out 28 of his 31 opponents – but Murray is not going in there already defeated or simply to boost his bank balance.

Success in this toughest of fights would be off the scale in terms of sporting achievements for a town that has punched well above its weight for years.

St Helens has never had a world boxing champion in living memory – the closest being former Pewfall resident Peter Kane who was flyweight champion in the 1930s.

Just imagine what effect seeing Murray put those three belts around his waist would have on our town; the spring it would put into the town’s collective step.

That imagery could just be the tonic the Saints need as they look forward to their own bid to lift a world crown.

The Super League Champions will tackle the NRL Premiers South Sydney at what will be a sold-out Langtree Park for the right to be called the best club side on the planet.

The Rabbitohs come here on the crest of a wave, with Russell Crowe’s mob featuring the remaining three Burgess boys and the towering Greg Inglis – but Saints will fancy their chances of taking the world title for the third time.

So yes, 2015 gives us a lot to look forward to – but let’s hope the last ten months are as jam-packed and as eventful as February!