SAINTS have had many a speedster on the flanks – from Tom van Vollenhoven through to Regan Grace – but one player who would have fancied his chances of winning a mythical 100m race between them all would be Australian flyer Darren Albert

The former Newcastle Knights and NSW State of Origin wing joined Saints in 2002 – initially for two years, but stretched to four – where he showed he had more to his game than pure pace.

Albert knew how to finish them and finished his time at Saints with a record of 88 tries from 124 appearances.

He had the misfortune to have made his debut in the freezing mud, sleet and rain at Stalybridge for the Challenge Cup tie against Oldham….and if that experience didn’t make him want to return then nothing would.

He had an outstanding first season in the red vee, and grabbed the first of three hat-tricks in the 42-16 Challenge Cup semi-final conquest of Leeds. Fellow wing Tony Stewart joined him in that treble club that afternoon.

Alas, the highly-fancied Saints were shocked by Wigan at Murrayfield meaning it was all on the Super League.

St Helens Star: Darren Albert scores at the Valley in a big Saints win

Albert was an ever present that year, chalking up 25 tries in 37 appearances, the final of which landed him a Grand Final winners’ ring to go join the elite club of champions from both sides of the world.

The 2003 campaign was tough at times with Albert showing his versatility, playing wing, full back and centre – in a year in which Saints ended trophyless for the first time since 1998.

Saints were back with a vengeance the following year and Albert was part of that team that ripped into 2004, beating all the top five sides as part of their Challenge Cup triumph over Wigan at Cardiff – alas that year was derailed and the trophies ended there.

St Helens Star:

In 2005 Albert found himself with a new partner, Jamie Lyon with whom he struck up a telepathic understanding.

With a strike rate of 28 tries from 28 matches Saints, under Daniel Anderson won the League Leaders Shield.

However, Albert and Sean Long were both injured in the game at Wigan and missed the play-offs meaning that they were denied a genuine crack at the Super League title.

Although he initially signed on for another year, Albert moved to Cronulla for 2006 – but he left may a fond memory of the Blond Bomber.

With 88 tries, there was plenty of times for the Scaff to hone their serenading with “Hey, Darren Albert…..I wanna know, how you scored that try….”