SAINTS prop Alex Walmsley was braced for a scorcher of a cup final as the team today went through captain's run at roughly the same time of the day.

With the sun blazing down, Walmsley was relishing a fast final against a team that equally likes to play football.

Speaking pitchside today after the team's last session before the big match Walmsley said the mood in the camp was different to the last time they appeared at Wembley two years ago.

Walmsley said: "It is going to be hot and we are training at the time that we are going to be playing tomorrow, so we have got a good idea of what the conditions are going to be like.

St Helens Star:

Morgan Knowles

"It is going to a challenge but we like nice, hot, dry conditions and that will make for a fast game and both teams like to play fast."

Saints have not won the Challenge Cup since 2008 - and on their last visit here, their first in 11 years, they were surprise losers to Warrington.

But Walmsley said: "There is a different feel about the place this time around.

"We are probably a bit more relaxed having been here before and experienced the occasion, it takes a bit of that out of the build-up and preparation.

"We can just concentrate on the rugby. That is what we do best as players – do what we do week-in, week-out.

"If you look back to 2019, there was probably a big monkey on our back in terms of actually getting here to Wembley and that was a big achievement in itself.

St Helens Star:

Lachlan Coote.

"There is no point getting here and not getting the job done. That is the different mindset that we have this time around.

"There was a tag of us not being a team that could do it on the big stage and win those big games.

"We have won back-to-back Grand Finals and a lot of semi-finals on the way as well.

"We know what it takes to win those big games. It is one thing knowing what it takes but then going out and actually delivering on that .

"That is our mindset. Being prepared to deliver on what is going to be a tough game."

Castleford were underdogs in the semi, but they hit Warrington with an early blitzkrieg - with Warrington left forlornly chasing the game.

Walmsley sees a threat from the Tigers, who come into it with a different approach with their first choice team not played for weeks. 

"They are rested and recovered with a full strength squad and in peak condition.

"We are in a different position because we have been playing and going after other teams and a bit more battered and bruised. We know they will come out firing.

"We have got be prepared to rise to that.

"We don’t want to be chasing the game – if you look back to 2019 it was similar conditions and it is a tough place to be if you are chasing games in this heat.

"Whoever scores first will be in the driving seat, without it defining the result.

"But we don’t want to be chasing teams two or three tries up," he said.