LUKE Thompson's titanic 72 minute stint in Saturday's Grand Final saw him become the first member of the Saints front row union to win the Harry Sunderland Award since Albert Halsall took the prize in the 1966 Championship Final.

Hailed by coach Justin Holbrook as the best prop in the world, Thompson's stats were more impressive than simply his endurance.

His 27 carries, yielded 188 metres and three tackle busts and on the other side of the ball he made 42 tackles to help lead a ferocious forward charge that laid the winning platform.

Thompson was not alone - with Alex Walmsley opening stint and the back up from fellow middles Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Kyle Amor and Jack Ashworth, plus Morgan Knowles at loose forward all being collectively forceful, dynamic and terrier like in keeping the underdogs under the cosh.

But the 24-year old former Pilkington Recs and Bold Miners junior was the pick of the bunch and deservedly won the poll for the man of the match.

After picking up the honour he said: "It is an unbelievable feeling.

"We have worked so hard all year as a group and we have worked hard all week in training.

"To get the win, with it being so long since we have been here, it is an unbelievable feeling and it is an unbelievable feeling to get the job done for Justin and send him home with some silverware.

"I didn't even think about winning man of the match, I just wanted to do the job for the team and thankfully we got the job done.

"I felt fresh - we had a few weeks off the last couple of weeks so I felt good going into the game."

Thomson will now be hoping to take his season's form into the test arena for Great Britain on their tour to New Zealand.

When Holbrook was asked if Thompson was the best front rower in the world, he replied: "Not as far as I am concerned - if you look at the job he has just done for us.

"It is hard to compare players but he is brilliant and he has been all year.

"If you look at what we have done with him this year we have held him back a fair few times. He has been good to go back on but on some nights it has all been about giving other guys game time - and we had that luxury.

"But in the final we never spoke about how long we was keeping him out there it was a case of 'away you go'."