THE performances of the two older heads in the Saints pack have played a big factor in the club’s winning start to the 2018 campaign.

Former skipper Jon Wilkin, 34, and Zeb Taia, 33, have been rolling back the years with their displays so far this term - and both crossed for well-taken, but important scores in last Friday’s win at Huddersfield.

Taia, who joined Saints from Gold Coast Titans in the early part of last year, appears to have benefited from a good pre-season, adding maturity and menace on the potent left edge.

Saints boss Justin Holbrook said: “Zeb Taia has been great for us.

“He is loving training and is a good thinker of the game.

“We have some discussions about playing and what he wants to do.

“He has got the balance right; he carries the ball strong, he is working well with his edge but is also running some good lines.

“He has a really good mix to his game and is going well.”

Holbrook was also full of praise for Wilkin, who relinquished the skipper’s armband ahead of the year with James Roby taking over.

The veteran former international has impressed in his specific role at loose forward, mixing industry with some shrewd link play with the halves and getting more out of his reduced minutes when spelled with Morgan Knowles or Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook.

“Wilko had a great pre-season,” Holbrook said.

“I knew how the side was gelling together (in the off season) that he was in for a great year.

“Wilko’s attitude has been great and he is playing well.

“His 80 minute days in the back row are gone and he is aware of that.

“But the link between the forwards and backs that he is providing is hard to defend against.

“That is the main reason why we are having so much joy so far this year.

“He has got a good combination going and it is working well.”