LIVERPOOL St Helens made an excellent start to their 2020 MJ Worsley Cup campaign with a much improved performance at Ormskirk, winning 23-10.

The win was underpinned by a strong and co-ordinated display from the pack, well led by acting skipper Paddy Royle.

There is a welcome youthful look to the front eight these days with Joe Jackson improving with every game at hooker; Chris Hall partnering Royle in the second row and now making his mark at the lineout; Conner Thompson and Connor Roberts proving effective at wing forward and the most impressive of them all on the day, Chris Hull at number eight. Up front the steady and influential presence of Adam Gore at loose head prop is balanced by Ross Macaulay on the other side.

On Saturday it all came together and in a performance that started straight from the first whistle they virtually played the full eighty minutes on the front foot.

A terrific start saw LSH’s Robert Sexton kick a penalty in front of the posts after three minutes.

Five minutes later a good break from Thompson led to Alex McClurg finding Sam Walker on the left wing for the youngster to race home in the corner. 0-8. The lead was extended in the 32nd minute after a fine move along the backs with Andy Bacon joining in the line to feed young Ruari Hennigan to neatly score his first 1st XV try. 0-13 at half-time.

Ormskirk started well in the second half determined to reduce the arrears, and eventually scored a try down the left wing after 59 minutes.

Then came an extraordinary and decisive six minutes later when Sam Walker scored twice in as many minutes to notch his hat-trick, both after two sensational breaks from Sean Richardson, rapidly earning legend status at the Lane, to put the result beyond doubt.

Ormskirk, due to visit LSH on Saturday in the League (2.15pm) provided a timely reminder of what they can do with a good try just before the finish. 10-23.