AFTER the disappointment of Wembley, questions began to be asked of a Saints team that had still not won any of the big prizes since 2008.

Surely, having been untouchable all year, they would not repeat the failings of 2018.

The tag of chokers had been hung around their necks – and no doubt gave them plenty of additional motivation.

Wins over Huddersfield and Hull FC meant they finished the regular season with a remarkable record of played 29, won 26, lost 3 – meaning they were 16 points clear of second-placed Wigan at the conclusion.

The reversion to the top-five play off meant that Saints could have two bites at the cherry to get to Old Trafford.

They only needed one - beating Wigan 40-10. Dominant from the kick off, the first four sets setting the tone in the way they twice pinned the Warriors back in their own 20, forcing them to kick on the back foot.

They made it tell, with Theo Fages zipping in to touch down Lachlan Coote’s diagonal grubber to get the scoreboard ticking over.

Saints were relentless thundering the ball in, not just the thundering charges of packmen Luke Thompson and Alex Walmsley.

They scored seven tries in all with Kevin Naiqama, Luke Thompson, Jonny Lomax, Zeb Taia and two from Mark Percival all crossing.

With both parts of Saints’ game working, it meant the game was largely played in the Wigan half and the first time the Warriors got the ball past the half way they suffered a nosebleed, with Kevin Naiqama snaffling the interception.

It was looking too easy, until Warriors streaked away from a long-range score from Liam Marshall in a momentary lapse.

However, thankfully that was a mere blip and normal service was resumed off the back of strong running of Thompson and co. The England prop was rewarded for his endeavours with Saints’ third try.

With Saints ending their sets much better, particularly with their kicking game turning the screw, they made their territorial advantage tell, with Jonny Lomax going over from close range to take a 26-6 lead into the break.

Saints never looked like letting that slip – and once Zeb Taia stretched over they could ease up.

Percival was rewarded for his toil at one end of the field, with two tries at the other to give the scoreline – even with Bevan French’s consolation – a justifiably emphatic margin.