ADAM Swift has no hard feelings about leaving Saints after eight seasons of living a boyhood dream.

The Blackbrook wingman has joined up with Hull FC after finding his opportunities in the red vee limited by the inexorable rise of Regan Grace and Tommy Makinson.

But he moves over to the East Riding with mixed feelings, but a heap of happy memories – most notably a dream debut and the night they won Super League against the odds.

He said: “I have been watching Saints since I was a young lad, watching Sean Long and Keiron Cunningham lift trophies so to then get coached by them and play here for eight years is a dream come true for a local lad.

“To leave is emotional but I am ready for new things now and a new challenge with Hull.

“I needed the game time and hopefully I can get that at Hull. You could say that I got comfortable at Saints being here for a few years.

“So I am packing up, moving houses and my girlfriend coming over with me to find a new job over there.

“A bit of change never hurt anyone.”

Swift explained why stepping out for Saints was so special – and how his debut in April 2012 was made even more emotional given it took place on the day his granddad Harold, an amateur rugby league stalwart, had died.

“I made my debut at Widnes in the Challenge Cup tie – we won it by two points – it was the day my granddad had passed so that was a bit of an emotional rollercoaster with that happening in my first game professionally,” he said.

“We got the victory and the week after at Langtree Park we had a celebration for my granddad before the match.

“The game was devoted to him with a lot of nice words said about him beforehand.

“It was my first home game and I scored a hat-trick - you could not write a script like that.

“It was like a dream come true and hopefully big man was looking down watching.”

Swift had a remarkable strike rate at Saints, rattling in 30 tries from his first 35 games in the red vee.

But it could have all been so different – and he was almost Wigan-bound in 2012.

He explains: “I had signed pay-as-you-play Saints contract at 17 in the reserves – but Johnny Jackson the old Wigan scout came in for me took me for the tour around Wigan.

“I told Derek Traynor I had been offered a first team contract there – but within half an hour I got a call saying there’s a contract here and I signed at Saints.”

Alas his development was hampered by a series of quite serious, but unrelated injuries. including a shoulder reconstruction, a syndesmosis repair and a few niggles, which he philosophically said were “just part of the sport”.

But there was no doubt in his mind over the best bit at Saints – that memorable against the odds 2014 Grand Final win over Wigan.

“The Grand Final was unbelievable for me.

“The way we won it – we got there having had had a lot of injuries and no halves. It was made worse with what happened with Larney (Lance Hohaia) in the game.

“Everybody had completely written us off – but we thrived off that as a team.

“It was dream come true for a local lad – lifting that trophy was something I will take to my grave because I have got it tattooed to the side of my leg. It is a day I will never forget – I was 21

“It was my first Grand Final and the atmosphere was unbelievable – there were a lot of young lads in the side Josh Jones , tommy Makinson, Luke Thompson, Greg Richards, Mark Percival – we had some good old boys in there too like Wello and Sia Soliola. it was a mixture of youth and smart old heads.”

Although he has lost his regular place in recent years, he has no hard feelings about the way it has happened – and paid tribute to those players occupying the flank spots.

“I can’t complain because Regan (Grace) has been absolutely phenomenal this year and he is the quickest lad in Super League. He was unlucky to miss out on GB.

“Tommy had an amazing accomplishment with England last year and then has shown it with his metres and being top try scorer this term.

“To say I have been unlucky not to play is not true – I have been third choice winger at a club were the two in front of me have been playing outstanding and I take my hat off to them.

“It has been a boyhood dream – but I am ready for a new challenge,” he said.