SAINTS boss Justin Holbrook was delighted to see his side march into the Challenge Cup semi-finals with an emphatic 48-10 win over Wakefield Trinity.

They were always in control of the game with a top notch display from rejuvenated Zeb Taia in the second row and some quality half back play from Jonny Lomax stand-outs in an all round team effort.

They scored some quality tries too, from eight different players to demonstrate a side that can strike from any part of the pitch.

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They now join the Hull FC, Warrington and the winners of Bradford and Halifax in the semis at Bolton.

Holbrook said: “It was obviously a tough game that was great to win, and to get through to the semis is fantastic.

“We played well last week and it was important to back it up. You can talk about playing the same way, but it can be hard to do.

“I thought the boys did that today and that is a credit to them.

“Right across the park we have options and players ready to go and looking for opportunities. We are in a good place when we have the ball and are defending pretty well too.”

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Unusually Saints went through the first half without making any substitutions, which Holbrook put down to it being a slow game, with plenty of stop-start.

He did however bring off middles Alex Walmsley, fit-again Luke Thompson and Morgan Knowles at the break with 26-6 to the good.

“The boys work hard on their fitness so I thought I would test them and pushed them through.

“That was a humid, hot day out there compared to what we are used to playing in and they handled it really well.

“There were some tough periods there, in particular just before half time, but we hung in there for those few minutes.

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“We did not start the second half too well and had to work pretty hard to turn the game back in our favour – the players did that and scored some good tries to finish the game off,” Holbrook said.

Zeb Taia produced a man of the match display, setting up a couple of tries and scoring one himself.

Holbrook was swift to hand him the plaudits and recognised Jonny Lomax’s efforts too.

“The last two weeks Zeb has been phenomenal out there and today he was terrific. I thought he was our best.

“Jonny Lomax has been outstanding all year, and right from the start he showed it again today. He had a hand in the first try and then plenty of others that followed.

“He is not trying to do too much and that is the pleasing thing - he is playing really well,” he said.

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After last year’s debacle at Bolton, when they were thrashed by Catalans, Saints will go there with additional motivation as they seek their first Wembley since 2008.

Holbrook said: “We get the opportunity now to go to the semi and play better at Bolton. That is what we want to do – we have earned it and played really well to get there.

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“It is a long way off, seven weeks away. We want to go there and play well because we have been playing well all year.

“The way we have gone about winning our games has been impressive – we have really been in control.”

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