AS rumblings continue over Ben Barba’s Saints future, Dom Peyroux is confirmed to be staying, writes Nathan Okell.

Head coach Justin Holbrook is delighted to have back-rower Peyroux on board again, with his contract due to end this year, and adds that star full-back Barba’s loss of form recently is not due to any distraction by speculation of a return to the NRL.

READ: Barba means no disrespect to Saints fans

READ: Peyroux, a transformed player - opinion piece

Holbrook, confirming Saints’ recruitment for 2019 is completed with the two new signings previously announced, said: “Dom will definitely stay, and Joseph Paulo and Kevin Naiqama will be coming in.

“Dom is one of those blokes who works hard every week and he has an impact on the edge.”

St Helens Star:

Saints back-rower Dominique Peyroux. Picture by Bernard Platt

A move back to Australia for Barba, who has one year left on his Saints deal, gathered momentum at the end of last week when reports Down Under stated that the former Cronulla Sharks Grand Final winner had negotiated an early release.

Holbrook, who said there was no early release clause written into Barba’s contract, admitted the club are looking to resolve the uncertainty over the former Dally M medal winner’s future, with internal discussions taking place.

“The club is looking at it because it has been lingering on for a while now and it’s going to continue doing so,” said Holbrook.

“They’re looking at the options of whether he does or doesn’t stay and how things will pan out either way.

“I don’t know the answer to be honest with you, but all we can try and do is to get him back to his best for the remainder of the year.”

Barba, who has scored 27 tries in 23 games but looked out of sorts of late, is almost back to full fitness.

“The speculation has been there all year and I can’t see it going away until the end of the year,” said Holbrook.

“That’s not affected him or the team, and it’s not going to start now.

“Benny picked up a knee injury a while back and then picked up a rib injury,” said Holbrook.

“He missed a few weeks as a result. He’s never really got going again after that.

“We obviously want to get him firing again towards the back end of the year like he was playing at the start of the year.

“I keep telling him an 80-85 percent Benny is still pretty good. He’s still doing a bit but not what he can do, so we’ve got to try and get him back to that sort of form.

“His knee is pretty much right now, but his ribs are still a little bit sore.

“The fact that we’ve got the next week off means he should be 100 percent after that.”