Saints snatch it
It’s been a tough couple of weeks for Keiron Cunningham but he will owe Jack Owens a drink tonight after the winger touched down with seven minutes to go to snatch a hard fought victory for the visitors. The win ended a three game losing streak and was also their first triumph in France since 2013, as they had lost on their four previous visits. It was a moment of magic from Theo Fages which set Owens free down the right edge, as he came up with a brilliant offload on his way to the floor to create the crucial game winning try.
The best form of defence… is defence
For some bizarre reason both sets of players decided they weren’t in the mood for defending in the first half, with seven tries scored in the opening 40. Five of those came in a frantic opening quarter as the two sides exchanged scores before Saints finally went back-to-back. With the final play of the first period Tommy Makinson came up with a brilliant cover tackle to deny Iain Thornley after the wide man had come up with a great break from his own try line two tackles earlier. That hit from St Helens’ fullback must have triggered a brain wave in the 34 players on the field, as they suddenly realised that if they started to defend they wouldn’t concede as many points! It was a lot tighter in the second half with only two tries scored, the last of which was Owens’ game winner.
Was it forward?
Catalans Dragons will look to Thomas Bosc’s try which was chalked off as a controversial moment in the match, as Brayden Williame broke after hitting a perfect line but his pass to the supporting Richie Myler was judged forward. Because of that, Bosc was denied a second of the game after he had earlier crossed for his side’s first of the contest which brought him to exactly 1,500 career points.
Potential turning point
Without a win since the opening round against Leeds Rhinos the pressure was on Saints to come up with a response, and against the odds they battled to a great victory away from home. They have struggled without Matty Smith but with Makinson chiming in the line from fullback they looked dangerous in attack, and will be confident going into their clash with rock-bottom Warrington Wolves next week. This could be the kick start Cunningham’s men needed.
Catalans Dragons 24 (18)
Thomas Bosc, Iain Thornley, Krisnan Inu, Brayden Wiliame, Fouad Yaha, Luke Walsh, Richie Myler, Sam Moa, Paul Aiton, Remi Casty, Justin Horo, Benjamin Garcia, Jason Baitieri Subs: Julian Bousquet, Mickael Simon, Luke Burgess, Alrix Da Costa
Tries: Bosc (6), Bousquet (14), Thornley (34), Aiton (47) Goals: Walsh 4/4
St Helens 28 (22)
Tommy Makinson, Jack Owens, Ryan Morgan, Mark Percival, Adam Swift, Theo Fages, Jon Wilkin, Alex Walmsley, James Roby, Luke Douglas, Zeb Taia, Dominique Peyroux, Morgan Knowles Subs: Kyle Amor, Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Adam Walker, Tommy Lee
Tries: Swift (2), Percival (11), Morgan (18), Walker (31), Owens (73) Goals: Percival 4/5