I’m still lost for words after that dramatic last-gasp defeat to Catalans Dragons at Magic Weekend.

It always promised to be one of, if not THE game of the Betfred Super League season – and didn’t it deliver!

Saints completely dominated the game up until the 75th minute, when we were leading 30-12, before the Dragons decided they were going to do a Saints… to Saints!

St Helens Star:

The champions looked in complete control up until that point. Lachlan Coote was running the show with his game management and kicking game, linking the backfield and attacking threat in good ball. On top of that, he came up with a number of big try saving tackles.

Another Saints player who never fails to impress me is the barnstorming Mark Percival. Percy is probably the best ball carrier in the Betfred Super League with his eye for a gap and lack of self-preservation!

St Helens Star:

Unfortunately, rugby league games are 80 minutes long, not 75. It was a strange last five minutes as Catalans fought their way back into the game – but in my opinion they didn’t do anything spectacular, it was more a case of the Saints defence completely collapsing.

Their first try on the comeback trail came through a soft short side play that saw Dean Whare cross the whitewash, before Gill Dudson brought them within one score after great individual brilliance by the elusive Arthur Mourge, who again breezed through some weak defence.

Then, as the hooter sounded, it was giant prop Sam Kasiano who completed the unthinkable as he was first to Josh Drinkwater’s cross-field kick to level the scores and take it into golden point.

They say big players come up with big plays, and this was certainly the case as the vastly-experienced James Maloney kicked a 40m drop goal to break Saints’ hearts and seal the Betfred Super League Leaders title for the first time ever.

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However, for Saints the big prize is still very much alive as we aim to retain the Betfred Super League trophy for the third year running – and it’s Leeds Rhinos who may feel the backlash of last weekend!

The Rhinos visit the Totally Wicked Stadium this Friday coming off the back of a dramatic golden point win against Hull FC in Newcastle.

Despite the loss to the league leaders, Saints are still favourites with title sponsors Betfred for Old Trafford glory come October.

They are 6/5 to retain their Super League crown, while Catalans are 11/4 – and as the vast majority of the game proved I totally agree.

St Helens Star:

It was so good to see the return of Magic Weekend in the great sporting city of Newcastle after what has been an extremely testing 18 months for everyone.

Another close game was that between rivals Warrington and Wigan. The Wire ran out 10-6 victors in a game that was riddled with errors from both teams. The Warriors’ misery continues as they look a shadow of the side that made the 2020 Grand Final, and this week face a tough trip to Hull FC.

But back to Saints vs Leeds, and I expect a big response from Kristian Woolf’s men. I’m backing Saints to win by at least 12 points (EVS at Betfred).